Courtesy Reuters

When, in 2006, Joseph Kabila became the first democratically elected president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, many Congolese and international observers hoped that stability had finally come to the country. During the previous decade, Congo had been ravaged by widespread violence, including the world's deadliest conflict since World War II -- a conflict that involved three Congolese rebel movements, 14 foreign armed groups, and countless militias; killed over 3.3 million Congolese; and destabilized most of central Africa. In 2001, the United Nations dispatched to the country what was to become its largest and most expensive peacekeeping mission. A peace settlement was reached

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