DR Congo country profile
The recent history of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) has been one of civil war and corruption.
It is rich in natural resources but has suffered from political instability, a lack of infrastructure, centuries of both commercial and colonial exploitation, and little widespread development since independence.
During the two Congo wars, from 1996-2003 the country was at the centre of what some observers call "Africa's world war", with widespread civilian suffering. The war claimed an up to six million lives, either as a direct result of fighting or because of disease and malnutrition.
Since the late-2000s, there has been continuing fighting in the east where a United Nations force is struggling to keep the peace.
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DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO: FACTS
- Capital: Kinshasa
- Area: 2,345,409 sq km
- Population: 108.4 million
- Languages: French, Kikongo ya leta, Lingala, Swahili, Tshiluba
- Life expectancy: 59 years (men) 62 years (women)
President: Flix Tshisekedi
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