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4,000 Great Lakes Region troops to contain insurgency in DR Congo

By Sarah Namulondo

A total of 10 countries in the Great Lakes Region including (Angola, Congo Brazzaville, South Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Zambia, Uganda and Burundi) have resolved to form a joint force of 4,000 troops to contain the insurgency in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), said Defence Minister Dr. Crispus Kiyonga.

The Defence minister who was officiating the passing out of 350 youths at the end of a two-week military and patriotism course at Kisinga Vocational Secondary School in Kisinga sub-county, Kasese district, Dec 3 said the force would operate under the command of Tanzania.

The current insurgency in the eastern DRC broke out in April this year when the M23 rebels mutinied and deserted from the country’s army causing over 500,000 people to flee from their homes in the ensuing unrest.

He told the youthful cadres, to avoid supporting elements that may want to change government by the use of force.

The Minister advised them to be supportive of ideas which are pro Pan-Africanism and regional integration for faster economic and social development of the African people.

He urged them to use the skills and knowledge they have acquired during the military and patriotism course to ensure that corruption is routed out the country.

Kiyonga noted that among the ten reasons the NRA/M waged a bush war was to fight corruption that existed in the former governments.

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