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Ramaphosa extends deployment of army to Mozambique

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has extended the deployment of the army to Mozambique for another few months.

File picture: Elmond Jiyane, GCIS

PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has extended the deployment of the army to Mozambique for another few months.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) is part of the group of soldiers from the region who were deployed to northern Mozambique following an increase in attacks by insurgents.

The northern part of Mozambique has been facing an insurgency over the last few years and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) leaders decided at a summit to send in troops to the troubled Cabo Delgado region.

South Africa sent 1,495 solders to northern Mozambique to join the SADC forces.

Ramaphosa wrote to acting Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli and the chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, Amos Masondo, informing them that he has extended the deployment of the soldiers to Mozambique until the end of the year.

“This serves to inform the National Assembly that I have extended the employment of 1,495 members of the SANDF for service in fulfilment of an international obligation of the Republic of South Africa towards the Southern African Development Community, to combat acts of terrorism and violent extremists affecting the northern areas of Mozambique under Operation Vikela.

“Members of the SANDF will continue with their responsibilities of combating acts of terrorism and violent extremism in the northern part of Mozambique under Operation Vikela, over the period April 16 to December 31, 2024.

“The expenditure expected to be incurred for this deployment amounts to R948,368,067,” said Ramaphosa.

The SANDF has been deployed in Mozambique since 2021 when there was an upsurge in attacks.

The government has also deployed soldiers in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo to counter the M23 rebels. This is part of the wider SADC mission, which is expected to take over from the United Nations Organisation Stabilisation Mission (Monusco) that has been in the eastern DRC for more than 20 years.

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