Belgium conquers Katanga


King Leopold of Belgium rules the Congo

1884 - 1908

Congo is given to Leopold as his private venture at the Conference of Berlin.

Roger Casement Investigation


After rumors of torture and killings of natives by colonial companies, the British Consul is sent to the Jungle to investigate and he finds the rumors are true.

Belgian Rule of Congo

1908 - 1960

Prime Minister Lumumba Arrested and Murdered

1960 - 1961

Congo Granted Independance

June 1960

Patrice Lumumba is prime minister and Joseph Kasavubu is president.

UN Troops Come to the Congo

June 1960

Congolese army rebels and Katanga state declares itself independent

Government Overthrown by Joseph Mobutu


Mobutu Renames Congo Zaire


Tutsi Rebels Capture Eastern Zaire


Mobutu Overthrown

May 1997

Tutsi and anti-Mobutu rebels capture capital of Zaire, and install Laurent-Desire Kabila as president, renaming the country Democratic Republic of Congo.

Rebellion Against Kabila

August 1998

Rwandan and Ugandan rebels advance towards capital and take much of eastern DRC. Troops from Angola, Namibia, and Zimbabwe side with Kabila.

Lusaka Peace Accord Signed

July 1999

Creates ceasefire between six warring countries

UN Troops sent to monitor ceasefire


Fighting continues between rebels from Uganda and Rwanda and government forces.

President Kabila Killed

January 2001

Shot by a bodyguard, succeeded by his son Joseph Kabila

Peace Agreements Between DRC, Uganda, and Rwanda


New Constitution Adopted

May 2005

Text is agreed upon by former warring groups

Free Election Held

July 2006

This election is the first in four decades, but there is no clear winner between the incumbent president and the opposing candidate. A run-off election is held in October and Kabila is declared the winner.

Clash Between DRC Army and rebels

August 2008

Leads to a refugee crisis in Eastern DRC

Mass rapes reported in North Kivu Province


Kabila Reelected

November 2011

Elected criticized abroad and disputed by many.

Clashes Between DRC and Rawandan Troops


Kabila accused of changing election law to prolong his term