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Mozambique’s aerial bush conflict following a SADC summit in Maputo

by Mahua Special Editor

In Mozambique, in June, a military force was agreed to help battle violent extremism in Cabo Delgado.

Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, South Africa, and Tanzania have all pledged troops, while Zimbabwe has said it may assist with military training (FADM).

In July, Rwanda announced the deployment of 700 soldiers and 300 policemen to Cabo Delgado, utilizing RwandAir A330-300s to transport the troops. Armoured vehicles were also delivered.

This initiative follows the worsening security situation in Cabo Delgado Province since 2017.

The FADM arrived first, with a Mi-8T bringing troops and cargo. In April 2019, one of the two Mi-8Ts crashed during a logistical flight.

Due to the increasingly deteriorating security situation, Mozambique requested assistance from Russia’s Wagner Group, which sent troops and Mi-17 and Mi-24 helicopters in September 2019. Following multiple fatalities and failure to develop working relationships with the FADM or the Mozambican Police, Wagner withdrew in November 2019.

In September 2019, the Mozambican Police recruited South African business Dyck Advisory Group (DAG) to help security operations in Cabo Delgado.

In addition to the SA341 Gazelle and Alouette III helicopters, DAG provided a Cessna 208, Diamond DA-42, Bat Hawk ultralights, and a CADG Helix intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft.

In 2020, a Bat Hawk and a Gazelle died.

After the militants attacked Palma in March 2021, DAG deployed three Gazelles, one Alouette III, and two AS350s to rescue people. DAG left Cabo Delgado after their contract was not renewed.

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