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Dar es Salaam. The Southern African Development Community (Sadc) summit on politics, defence and security issues has condemned terrorist attacks in Cabo Delgado in the northern province of Mozambique.
The summit of heads of the 16-member states, which met in the Zimbabwean capital of Harare under the chairperson of the Sadc organ on politics, defence and security cooperation, President Emmerson Mnangangwa of Zimbabwe, delivered a stern warning to the terrorists.
The gathering, which was also attended by President Felipe Nyusi of Mozambique, was convened by the bloc’s Executive Secretary, Stergomena Tax, after consultation with the Sadc chairman, Dr John Magufuli, to discuss terrorism in Mozambique.
According to the United Nations, at least 28 terrorist incidents have been recorded and over 400 citizens have lost their lives while 100,000 others have been displaced in the Cabo Delgado province since 2017.
Already some insurgent groups, including Ahlu Sunna Wa-Jama, have claimed to be responsible for the attacks.
Early this month, the government of Tanzania deployed its forces on the border with the northern part of Mozambique following attacks carried out by insurgents.
“Mozambique expressed its concern on the increasing terrorist attacks at the summit and asked Sadc to assist in surmounting the problem. Such terror attacks have prevailed for more than two years and we are closely following up on this,” Dr Tax said.
“By recognising defence, security, terrorism and needed questions, cooperation is part of our protocol. The summit agreed to help and cooperate with Mozambique because the latter will be affected and all other member countries as well.”
The chairperson of the SADC organ, President Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe, was quoted as saying that the integration was in a good position of restoring serenity within the member states.
“If we work shoulder in shoulder, we will address this challenge (Mozambique) and others. The issue of controlling terrorism calls for all of us to be committed.”
According to Sadc, the summit also agreed on close follow-ups on and monitoring the insurgency following President Nyusi’s request and slamming all the ongoing insurgent activities.
The insurgency is an ongoing conflict in Cabo Delgado Province mainly fought between Islamist militants attempting to establish an Islamic state in the region, and Mozambican security forces.