Angolan police foil anti-government protests

dos santos

Angolan police briefly detained dozens of demonstrators in the capital Luanda after they tried to march in support of a group of activists that were jailed for planning a rebellion.

Witnesses say the armed police rounded up the protestors as they gathered at Independence Garden for the abortive march in support of 17 activists sentenced last month for reportedly plotting against President Jose Eduardo dos Santos’s government.

The jailed activists were arrested in June after organising a reading of U.S. academic Gene Sharp’s 1993 book “From Dictatorship to Democracy: A Conceptual Framework for Liberation”. The book’s cover describes it as “a blueprint for non-violent resistance to repressive regimes”.

President dos Santos has been in power since 1979, and is Africa’s second longest ruling leader.

Critics have accused him of mismanaging the country’s oil wealth and making an elite vastly rich in a country ranked among the world’s most corrupt.

The 73-year-old has expressed his intention to step down in 2018.