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Mozambique insurgency: Rwanda leads the fightback
Mozambique insurgency: Rwanda leads the fightback

A 1,000-strong Rwandan force has hit the ground running since its deployment in Mozambique to fight poor insurgents who have carried out devastating attacks in the far north of the country. In two weeks, the troops - the first foreign force to be deployed against the insurgents - have taken a key road junction, held by the militants for the past year, and have reached the port town of Mocímboa da Praia.

In four years the insurgents have taken control of most of five districts in Cabo Delgado province in the north east of Mozambique. So far 3,100 people have been killed and 820,000 displaced - more than the entire population of the five districts.

When in March the insurgents captured Palma, the gas boom town adjoining Total's $20bn (£14bn) development of the second largest gas field in Africa, the French oil giant abandoned the massive construction site. Mozambique's defence forces are widely regarded as corrupt, poorly trained and ill-equipped and were no match for a growing but still rag-tag band of insurgents.

 

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