Joint Rwanda and SADC forces operation restores life in Macomia, Mozambique

Mozambican soldiers (right) and Rwanda policemen in Pemba, Cabo Delgado province, Mozambique.
Mozambican soldiers (right) and Rwanda policemen in Pemba, Cabo Delgado province, Mozambique.
  • Rwanda Forces started operating in Macomia, Mozambique, on 30 March after a series of meetings with SADC counterparts.
  • Hundreds of people who were in captivity have been rescued and will soon return back to their homes.
  • Macomia territory falls under the SADC Mission in Mozambique.

A month-long joint operation by Rwandan security forces and the SADC Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) in the Macomia district of Cabo Delgado has restored life to normal.

Rwanda's Defence and Military spokesperson, Colonel Ronald Rwivanga said a considerable number of people who were in captivity were rescued from Islamic State-linked insurgents.

"The operations have been successful and have led to the return of hundreds of civilian captives who were under the insurgents' control," he said.

The Governor of Cabo Delgado Province, Valige Tauabo, visited Rwandan forces at Chai administrative post and commended the joint effort by the two armies.

"In his remarks, the Governor of Cabo Delgado commended the work done by the Joint Forces in fighting Al Shabaab in Cabo Delgado. He said that it was now clear that the security situation has normalised in the province.

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"He further said that the population would soon fully return to their homes," said the Rwandan Defence Forces in a statement.

The two forces initially deployed to the oil and gas-rich province of Mozambique separately last year were until March conducting operations against Islamic extremists, which critics said were uncoordinated.

But after a series of meetings between the two forces, they agreed that the Rwandan security forces should come on board in Macomia a territory that lay under the SAMIM radar.

"Rwandan security forces have been deployed to Cabo Delgado's Macomia district since 30th March 2022, to carry out joint operations with SADC/SAMIM and FADM for some time after having held joint meetings in Mocímboa da Praia and Pemba. The security of Macomia is the responsibility of the Southern African Development Community Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM)," Rwanda security forces said.

About 800 000 people have been displaced by the ongoing insurgency and over 3 000 killed in the now four-year-old conflict.

The News24 Africa Desk is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation. The stories produced through the Africa Desk and the opinions and statements that may be contained herein do not reflect those of the Hanns Seidel Foundation.

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