Inside Story

Can the Belgian King heal the wounds of colonial atrocities?

The Belgian King and Queen are in Democratic Republic of Congo for a six-day trip.

A legacy of Belgian colonialism in central Africa – in the course of two centuries, millions of people are believed to have been killed or mutilated in what is now the modern-day Democratic Republic of Congo, including the nation’s first Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba.

The arrival of Belgium’s royal couple on their first visit to the country is being billed as a way to move forward, but with such a long list of historical grievances – many Congolese are sceptical that any real action or accountability can be achieved.

Presenter: Kim Vinnell


Jonathan Offei-Ansah – Founder and publisher of AfricaBriefing, a pan-African news magazine

Theodore Trefon – Researcher, Royal Museum for Central Africa

Phil Clark – Professor of international politics at the School of Oriental and African Studies