Lesotho sends soldiers to Mozambique

Lesotho sends soldiers to Mozambique

MASERU – LESOTHO will send soldiers to Mozambique as part of the SADC force to fight the Islamic State insurgents terrorising the country’s northern region.
Defence Minister Halebonoe Setšabi yesterday said the decision to send troops to Mozambique was reached at a SADC summit last month.
According to that decision, the SADC Stand-by Force is supposed to be in Mozambique today but Setšabi said they have been waiting to finalise some logistics.

“We are doing so now and we will publish the decisions after our request is accepted by the relevant authority,” he said.
Setšabi said the final decision on how to equip the troops will be made today.
He said they will disclose the exact number of troops to be sent to Mozambique when the request is approved.
The Islamic State-linked insurgents have been terrorising the Mozambique northern region of Cabo Delgado since 2017, causing a humanitarian crisis that has left hundreds dead, thousands facing food shortages and over a million displaced.

The insurgency has intensified since the beginning of the year.
“About the current prevailing situation in Mozambique, the SADC called a special meeting of heads of states,” Setšabi said.
“We made pledges there and one of them is to send soldiers there together with other SADC countries, not only us.”

The SADC Stand-by Force was established in August 2008 and it consists of the army, police, and civilians from member states.
It works on behalf of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation and is led by the region’s army commanders.
The mission which is supposed to start today is led by the Botswana Chief of Staff and has 3 000-troops.

Nkheli Liphoto

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