Eleven crushed during a concert in an overcrowded stadium in Kinshasa headlined by Congolese singer Fally Ipupa

Eleven people were killed on Saturday, including two policemen, during a crush at a concert in a crowded stadium in Kinshasa headlined by Congolese singer Fally Ipupa, the interior minister said.

The capital’s Martyrs’ Stadium was packed beyond its capacity of 80,000 and some of the crowd ended up making their way into the VIP and reserved sections, Reuters reporters said at the concert.

The police recorded “11 deaths, including 10 by suffocation and crushing, and seven hospitalizations”, Minister Daniel Aselo Okito said in a press release.

Security forces earlier fired tear gas in an attempt to disperse violent crowds on the streets outside the stadium, where many had gathered ahead of the concert by Ipupa, from Kinshasa, which was cheered in Democratic Republic of the Congo, in Europe and elsewhere.

The eventual number of attendees inside the stadium far exceeded the number that the public and private security personnel present could control.

Ipupa said he didn’t hear about the deaths until Sunday morning when he woke up after his performance.

“It hurts me. I’m from Kinshasa and of course I share the grief of the families,” he said in an interview.

In 2020, French police evacuated Gare de Lyon in Paris after people started fires nearby during unrest ahead of a planned Ipupa concert.

Reuters

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