Freeing Congo's Mokoko Must Be Condition for IMF Deal

Lawyers for jailed Congo Republic opposition figure Jean-Marie Michel Mokoko called on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to make his release a condition for the approval of a bailout for the debt-crippled nation, the International New York Times reported on a Reuters story. Like other Central African oil producing countries, Congo has been hit by low crude prices. Several neighbors, including Chad and Gabon, have already secured bailouts from the IMF. Last month the Fund said it had "reached broad understandings on policies" it could support and that it would propose a deal once Congo fulfilled conditions including debt restructuring. Mokoko, a former army chief and presidential candidate, was jailed for 20 years this month after his conviction on charges of seeking to topple the government of President Denis Sassou-Nguesso. Read more. (Subscription required.)