Mine recently attacked in the DRC is owned by a US citizen: Chinese Embassy
Published: Nov 25, 2021 01:20 AM
The photo taken on April 28, 2010 shows miners in the Democratic Republic of Congo. File Photo: VCG

The photo taken on April 28, 2010 shows miners in the Democratic Republic of Congo. File Photo: VCG

The Chinese Embassy in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) confirmed with the Global Times that Bayond Mining, whose mine suffered an armed attack three days ago leaving five Chinese nationals kidnapped, is owned by a US citizen. 

The embassy also refuted some foreign media outlets for using the incident to smear Chinese mining companies in the country, saying such reports are totally groundless.

Bayond Mining is a newly registered company in the province of Sud Kivu in eastern DRC. Its mine was attacked by an unknown armed group on Sunday, leaving one local police officer dead and five Chinese nationals kidnapped, the embassy stated, adding that as far as they know, the five Chinese are safe. 

The legal representative of the company is a US citizen, and not a Chinese citizen as some foreign media previously reported, according to the embassy.    

Although no further details of the incident were revealed by authorities, Reuters reported on Sunday after the attack that "relations are already strained between Chinese mining companies and local authorities, who say some firms are operating illegally without licenses."

In response to such speculation, the embassy said that the Chinese government always requires Chinese companies in the DRC to abide by local regulations and laws and operate their businesses in accordance with laws and integrity. 

The embassy noted that even though there are a very few companies that have problems in operation, the embassy had required them to rectify. 

Some foreign media smear the image of Chinese companies and nationals. They aim at damaging the relationship between China and the DRC, read the embassy's email. 

In a warning to Chinese citizens in the DRC on Sunday following the incident, the embassy said that the security situation in the provinces of l'Ituri, Nord Kivu and Sud Kivu is very severe, and armed attacks have occurred in these places frequently.

The embassy explained that besides Chinese citizens, other foreigners and local residents also often face attacks and kidnappings which are normally for ransom.  

According to the embassy, due to the deteriorating situation in eastern DRC, at least 700 civilians in the region have died in armed attacks from May until now.  

As to the attacks targeting Chinese citizens and companies, the embassy gave some recent examples. 

On October 7, a Chinese employee of a border station project of a Chinese company in the country was kidnapped by an armed group and was released on October 12. 

On November 18, some people whose identities were not clear robbed a mine belonging to a Chinese company, but no Chinese nationals were hurt or killed.     

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