Four workers kidnapped from a mine in Maneima Province, Democratic Republic of Congo, on the first of March this year have been released following negotiations. The four men, three Congolese nationals and one from France, were kidnapped from the Namoya Gold Mine in Salamabila, along with a fifth man, from Tanzania, who was released a month ago.
Gold has been mined comercially at Namoya since the 1930s, in what was then the Belgian Congo., though production ceased in 1961 during the civil war that followed Congolese independence. The site was purchased from the Congolese Government by the Canadian mining giant Banro in 2013, with comercial production resuming in January 2016. However this has brought the company into conflict with local artisanal miners who had operated small scale mining on the site during the 50 years of inactivity, and who claim they were promised employment at the new mine inreturn for abandoning their activity, work which has not been forthcoming.
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