The Governor of Mozambique’s northernmost Province of Cabo Delgado on Saturday, April 30, visited Rwandan forces at Chai administrative post in Macomia District where Rwandan forces recently started battling Islamic State-linked terrorists.
During his visit, Valige Tauabo was received by the Task Force Battle Group Commander, Brig Gen Pascal Muhizi, who briefed him on the current security situation in Macomia District.
According to a Rwanda Defence Force statement, 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.
“He further said that the population would soon fully return to their homes.”
As noted, Rwandan security forces were deployed to Macomia District March 30, to carry out joint operations withthe Southern African Development Community Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) and the Mozambican military “for some time” after the joint meetings earlier held in Mocímboa da Praia and in Pemba
The security of Macomia is the responsibility of SAMIM.
Defence and Military Spokesperson, Col Ronald Rwivanga, on Saturday, April 23, told The New Times: “We have been conducting joint operations with Mozambican and SADC, or SAMIM forces in Macomia District to rout out remnants of terrorist insurgents in the general area of Chai.
“This came after a series of joint meetings in Mocimboa Da Praia. The operations have been successful and have led to the return of hundreds of civilian captives who were under the insurgents control.”
Cabo Delgado Province has 16 districts but the ones most affected by terrorist were Palma, Mocimboa da Praia, Mueda, Mocamia, Muidumbe and Nangade.
Rwandan forces – in collaboration with their Mozambican counterparts – were initially allowed to only operate north of the Messalo River in the districts of Palma and Mocimboa da Praia. These two district had the biggest terrorist strongholds.
On July 9, 2021, at the request of Maputo, Kigali deployed troops to the latter’s northernmost Province of Cabo Delgadoto help fight the Islamic States-linked terrorists, stabilize the area and restore state authority.
Barely two weeks after landing, Rwandan and Mozambican forces were circling major bases of the terrorists,capturing them, one after a time.
On August 8, 2021, they captured Mocimboa da Praia, a port city that had been the headquarters of the Islamic State-linked terrorist group in Cabo Delgado for nearly five years. Its capture dealt a heavy blow to the insurgents who had driven around 826,000 people from their homes and killed more than 2,000 others, in the Province.
In less than three months, the terrorists were dislodged from all their strongholds in areas where Rwandan forces operate.
In October 2021, Rwandan and Mozambican military commanders as well as those from the SADC Mission in Mozambique met and agreed to, among others, enhance intelligence sharing in the fight against the terrorists.
By and large, peace and stability has returned and thousands of previously displaced people returned home and resumed their normal lives in areas like Palma.