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Monday, 26 March, 2001, 10:52 GMT 11:52 UK
Zimbabwe hosts Kabila
SA President Thabo Mbeki and President Kabila
President Kabila has met many key figures in recent weeks
President Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo is holding talks with President Robert Mugabe on his first state visit to Zimbabwe.

The visit is connected to the latest ceasefire in the Congo and with the withdrawal of foreign troops from that country.

Zimbabwe, is Mr Kabila's main backer in his country's civil war with more than 10,000 troops estimated to be in the country.

On the eve of the visit, his foreign minister, Leonard She Okitundu, warned that Congo would consider military action against rebels of the Rally for Democracy, who are occupying the southeastern town of Pweto.

Namibia and Angola also have troops in Congo supporting the government.

Rwanda and Uganda has backed the rebels in the country.

Airport

The airport was sealed off for Kabila's arrival and for the first time, foreign and independent reporters were barred from covering a foreign dignitary's arrival.


Government officials said that only state-controlled media would be allowed into news conferences attended by President Kabila.

President Kabila is also expected to address parliament and meet local business leaders during his two-day visit.

The UN has reported that foreign troops have started withdrawing from frontline positions in line with a plan to enable the UN to monitor a cease-fire.

President Kabila became president in January after his father, Laurent, was assassinated by a bodyguard.

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See also:

28 Feb 01 | Africa
Troops withdraw from DR Congo
16 Jan 01 | Africa
DR Congo's troubled history
26 Jan 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Democratic Republic of Congo
02 Feb 01 | Africa
Kabila's whirlwind tour
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