Tanzania, Mozambique to bolster security cooperation as terrorism threats persist 

Dr Stergomena Tax, the minister for Defence and the Nation- Building Force, speaks at the conclusion of yesterday’s joint commission on defence and security meeting in Dar es Salaam, which included representatives from the governments of Tanzania and Mozambique. Photo | Michael Matemanga

What you need to know:

  • Dr Stergomena Tax, the Minister of Defence and National Service, emphasised the importance of fostering strong partnerships to tackle common challenges.

Dar es Salaam. Tanzania and Mozambique have reiterated their commitment to deepen defence and security cooperation in a significant gesture to bolster their collective security efforts.

This commitment was made at the conclusion of a four-day joint permanent commission on defence and security, where government officials and security delegates from both countries came together to address the pressing challenges they face in the realm of security.

Dr Stergomena Tax, the Minister of Defence and National Service, emphasised the importance of fostering strong partnerships to tackle common challenges.

She stated: “In this Joint Commission, we have discussed bilateral defence and security matters, shared our experiences, explored opportunities, and agreed to enhance our collaboration and advance our common goals of peace, security, stability, and prosperity.”

This renewed commitment comes at a critical time when both nations are grappling with evolving security threats, including terrorism, insurgency, and cross-border organised crimes.

The challenges are particularly pronounced in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado Province, where terrorist activities have escalated in recent years, resulting in a significant loss of life and instability.

While acknowledging the progress made thus far in their collaborative efforts, Dr Tax underlined that much work remained to be done.

“Threats posed by terrorism, insurgency, and cross-border organised crimes continue to evolve, requiring us to remain vigilant adapt new strategies, and deepen our collaboration,” she cautioned.

The geographical proximity of Tanzania and Mozambique, sharing the longest border in the region at approximately 800 kilometres, underscores the importance of their cooperation.

Their combined efforts have yielded tangible results, including successful joint operations, intelligence sharing, and capacity-building initiatives.

Mr Pascoal Pedro João Ronda, Interior Minister for Mozambique and Head of Delegation, underscored the significance of this collaboration for the development and security of both nations.

“What we have done today is to go through all the achievements we have accomplished and discuss a new path towards strengthening our peace and security as a factor in the development of our nations.”

Mr João Ronda expressed his optimism regarding the resolutions reached during the meeting.

He emphasised that the resolutions would guide their course over the next 12 months, bringing tangible benefits to both states, defence and security forces, and the people.

One of the critical areas of focus during the discussions was the ongoing fight against terrorism in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado Province.

Since October 2017, this region has witnessed a staggering number of political violence events, with 4,737 reported fatalities, including 2,028 civilian casualties.

Tanzania has been actively involved in assisting Mozambique through the Southern Development Community (SADC) mission, which has recently been extended for another 12 months.

Dr Tax and Mr João Ronda jointly highlighted the spirit of solidarity that has developed between the two nations in the face of adversity.

Their collaborative efforts have significantly improved their collective ability to respond to security threats and maintain stability in the region.

The two countries’ commitment to working hand in hand to enhance defence and security is a cornerstone in the ongoing struggle against terrorism and instability.