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Last Updated: Friday, 23 March 2007, 12:31 GMT
Eyewitness: Foreigners' fears in Kinshasa
Nigerian businessman Ugoo, 24, tells the BBC News website what is it like in the Democratic Republic of Congo's capital, Kinshasa, where militiamen loyal to opposition leader Jean-Pierre Bemba are fighting with the army.

Soldiers loyal to former Vice President Jean-Pierre Bemba wearing tribal dress walk down a street in Kinshasa
Gunfire can be heard all over the city of Kinshasa
It is very, very terrible. We can't go out.

Gunshots are in the air and everywhere is shaking. Our ears are filled with 'boom-booms' from the bombs and the AK-47s' never-stopping 'rat-tat-tat, rat-tat-tat, rat-tat-tat, tat-tat'.

We are in God's arms now.

This fighting has come as a shock. I was at work when it started yesterday and making my way back to my house was frightening. It has caught us unaware. Because it came so quick, no-one was prepared. There is no food to eat.

The situation is shocking.

But we knew it was going to happen because on Sunday, Bemba [opposition leader Jean-Pierre Bemba] made a broadcast and in it he said a lot of bad things about the government, and so we knew that the government would react.

'The reason for all the trouble'

I am scared. I am afraid of what the opposition can do. They are well-armed and they are very brave. They are different, those fighters. The government soldiers are not like them.

Soldiers loyal to former Vice President Jean-Pierre Bemba
I am afraid of what the opposition can do. They are well-armed and they are very brave. They are different
Ugoo, Kinshasa

We just pray the governement soldiers will be able to kick them, and send them out of Kinshasa.

My brother and I are the only foreigners in the whole of the compound where we live in the Kasavubu area of the city.

We have lived here for a year now but it is not good to be a foreigner here. The Kinois [locals] are all supporters of the opposition, who are against foreigners.

We feel marginalised all the time. And with the fighting going-on now, it makes us more afraid. It is a worry. We are fearing for our safety.

We are calling our family in Nigeria regularly to keep them updated. They are very scared for us.



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Gunfire echoes on the streets of Kinshasa



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