Africa-Press – Rwanda. The Mozambican Civil Administration in Mocimboa da Praia and Rwanda security forces on Saturday, August 13, received another batch of 437 internally displaced persons from the Quitunda IDP camp.
They had fled their homes in 2019 following attacks by terrorists in Mozambique’s northernmost Province of Cabo Delgado, according to a statement from the Ministry of Defence.
Most of the local population fled and gathered in Quitunda IDP camp, in Palma District, while others fled to different places of Cabo Delgado.
Anica Mvita a mother of five said: “My children and I, lived in hardships without basic needs in the IDPs camp but hopefully the life is going to change.”
The Chief of Civil Administration, Sumaila Mussa, emphasised that Mozambican Authorities will keep doing everything possible to avail the basic necessities for the returnees to be able to start a new life.
More than 2,630 people have returned to their homes in Mocimboa da Praia city and its surroundings while about 3,000 settled in Awasse village since June.
In July 2021, at the request of Maputo, Kigali deployed troops to Cabo Delgado to help fight the Islamic States-linked terrorists, stabilize the area and restore state authority.
Kigali sent its forces to work closely with Mozambique Armed Defence Forces (FADM) as well as forces from the Southern African Development Community, in the fight against terrorism in Cabo Delgado.
In October 2017, armed extremists linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) launched an insurgency in Cabo Delgado. In August 2020 the insurgents seized Mocímboa da Praia, the province’s key port city. More than 50 people were beheaded by the terrorists in the province in April 2020 and a similar number in November 2020.
In September 2020, the insurgents captured Vamizi Island in the Indian Ocean. On March 24, last year, they seized Palma, a town on the northeast coast of Cabo Delgado Province, murdering dozens of civilians and displacing more than 35,000 of the town’s 75,000 residents.
But about 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, the joint forces captured Mocimboa da Praia, a port city that was the headquarters of the Islamic State-linked terrorist group in Cabo Delgado for nearly five years.
The capture of the port city 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 October 2021, Rwandan and Mozambican military commanders as well as those from the Southern African Development Community Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM), agreed to, among others, enhance intelligence sharing in the fight against the terrorists.
The overall situation in Cabo Delgado has improved significantly, with schools reopening in many areas. The terrorists were dislodged from all their previous strongholds in areas where Rwandan forces operate.
Villages along the main roads from Palma to Mocímboa da Praia, and Mueda, were liberated, giving room for locals there to return and resume their normal lives.
By and large, the Mozambican state regained lost territory and started re-establishing its administration, hence giving hope to the entire population.
By early August 2021, Rwandan and Mozambican forces were in full control of the base of Awasse after repulsing the insurgency.
Earlier, before Rwandan security forces arrived, an increased number of terrorist attacks were reported along the N380 route—which runs from Macomia to Palma, through Mocimboa da Praia—especially around the Awasse junction.
The capture of Awasse and the terrorists’ bases afar opened up the strategic N380 road which is critical for connecting the northern ports as well as for logistics supply to the liquefied natural gas project in the Afungi peninsula, in Palma district.