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AFRICA NEWSDR Congo grants Belgian Movie Star, Van Damme diplomatic passport and ambassadorial role; actor says he was born in Congo

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 Legendary Hollywood actor Jean-Claude van Damme has expressed his excitement after he received a Congolese diplomatic passport and was also made a cultural, youth, and wildlife ambassador for the The newly joined East African country.

The Belgian actor has been given a mission to promote the DRC internationally.

He is set to use his fame and notoriety to advance Congolese sport and culture, but above all else enhance the protection of forests as well as local fauna and flora.

Deputy Foreign Minister Samy Adubango presented the Belgian actor with the passport,on behalf of President Fรฉlix Tshisekedi. The DRC wants to put climate at the heart of discussions with international partners and present solutions to global warming.

At a ceremony in Kinshasa to accept the title and his new ambassadorial role, the 61-year-old said he’ll try and convince fellow celebrities that the DRC is a safe country.

“I will try to convince international stars like Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Jackie Chan and many others. There are also singers like Jennifer Lopez, footballers like Messi, Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo, they have to come to this country to show that there is security, showing that Congo can protect showbiz actors,” the actor told Franceinfo.

Not only will the Belgian actor hone in on climate, he will also be responsible for attracting more investors to the country, especially in the agricultural sector.

He included that this mission was on a voluntary basis and he would not be paid. Jean-Claude Van Damme had previously met with the President of the DRC in 2021.

During the ceremony, the award-winning actor also surprisingly revealed he was actually born in DR Congo, adding that he was “a native” of the country’s south-east city of Likasi.

The volatile East African nation has reportedly experienced decades of conflict as armed groups continue to operate in the country’s mineral-rich east region. But van Damme, during the press conference, made mention of the country’s investment opportunities.

“DR Congo is worth $36tn [£27tn] in minerals… my job is to find investors who understand that they have to give first before receiving, and to have a maximum honesty with President Fรฉlix Antoine Tshisekedi,” the Cyborg actor said.

The Democratic Republic of Congo formally joined the East African Community on Friday when President Felix Tshisekedi signed the deed of Accession to the Treaty establishing the EAC at a ceremony held on Friday at State House Nairobi.

On Friday, 8th April, 2022, the Democratic Republic of Congo formally joined the East African Community on Friday when President Felix Tshisekedi signed the deed of Accession to the Treaty establishing the EAC at a ceremony at State House Nairobi.

The Belgian actor was born in Brussels on 18 October 1960, where he throughout his childhood practiced martial arts. He moved to the United States in 1982 to become an actor and got his breakthrough in the martial arts film Bloodsport (1988).

Van Damme became a popular actor for his action films and his breakthrough was followed with films such as Universal Soldier (1992), Hard Target (1993) and Timecop (1994).

More recently, the actor has been in films including The Expendables (2012), the Kung Fu Panda franchise (2011-2016) and the Kickboxer reboot (2016-2018).

Source: https://panafricandailynews.org/

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