Rwanda Friday said it was sending its troops to Mozambique’s northern region to beef up the country’s efforts in fighting Islamist militants.
According to a statement released by government, a total of 1,000 soldiers and police are being dispatched to buffer the Cabo Delgado province from the militants.
The joint force will work closely with Mozambique’s armed forces and those that the Southern African Development Community regional bloc plans to send, the government of Rwanda said in a statement on its website.
“The Rwandan contingent will support efforts to restore Mozambican state authority by conducting combat and security operations, as well as stabilization and security-sector reform,” according to the statement.
The deployment —“follows the signing of several agreements between the two countries in 2018, and is grounded in Rwanda’s commitment to the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine and the 2015 Kigali Principles on the Protection of Civilians,” authorities said.
In October 2017, armed extremists linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) launched an insurgency in the Cabo Delgado region of Mozambique and the country’s forces have been battling them but without tangible success.
The militants have since seized a couple of townships killing dozens of civilians with thousands left homeless.