Joint Mozambique-Rwandan Operation Close in on Major Port City

Rwandan and Mozambican forces battling the terrorist group in Cabo Delgado Province have closed in on the strategic port city of Mocimboa da Praia from three fronts.

While Rwandan forces are moving in from the north and west of the city, Mozambican forces are advancing from the south of the coast town. 

Some Rwanda’s forces are stationed around the Afungi-Palma-Mocimboa da Praia operational corridor.

While a second Rwandan front is advancing through the Mueda-Awasse-Mocimboa da Praia swath, west of the target district.

Although Mocimboa da Praia located about 80 kilometres, by road, southwards was their main objective, Afungi – a liberated port city with an airport and Liquefied Natural Gas facilities, Rwandan forces was liberated on Saturday August 7.

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Reports however indicates that some of the joint forces are as near as five kilometres from the city, and cruising in fast, with clinical finish.

Assistant Commissioner of Police Desire Gumira, the RNP contingent commander in Cabo Delgado said the main axis force arrived in Afungi on July 10.

Armed extremists launched an insurgency in Cabo Delgado in 2017. The attacks worsened by April 2020. They beheaded scores of people. In August 2020, they seized Mocimboa da Praia.

Emboldened by their pyrrhic victory, the insurgents captured Vamizi Island in the Indian Ocean in September of the same year.

After the initial briefing, they were dispatched to secure the Afungi-Palma axis and to seize Palma town.

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“The Rwandan security force Police remained at Afungi to secure the Airport, port and Liquefied Natural Gas facilities,” Gumira said.

“Subsequently, the forces advanced to clear enemy pockets in areas of Palma, Mute, Zambia, Mapalanganha, Namalala, Maputo, Tete, Quelimane and Njama, towards the insurgents’ Mocimboa da Praia strongholds.”

Rwandan troops on Saturday, eliminated four insurgents and captured three machine guns, six grenades and two rocket propelled grenades in a village known as Nantelemule in Mocimboa da Praia district.

The troops were dispatched to work closely with Mozambique Armed Defence Forces (FADM) and forces from SADC, in the fight against terrorists in the troubled Cabo Delgado.

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