Rwanda announced on Friday that it was deploying its troops in Mozambique’s restive northern region to buffer the country’s efforts in fighting Islamist militants.
A total of 1,000 soldiers and police are being dispatched to help pacify the Cabo Delgado province, according to a government statement released on Friday.
The joint force will work closely with Mozambique’s armed forces and those that the Southern African Development Community regional bloc plans to send, the government of Rwanda said in a statement on its website.
“The Rwandan contingent will support efforts to restore Mozambican state authority by conducting combat and security operations, as well as stabilization and security-sector reform,” according to the statement.
The Southern African Development Community, which doesn’t count Rwanda among its 16 member states, also plans to deploy its standby force to Mozambique’s northern Cabo Delgado province to quell fighting.
An Islamic State-linked insurgency prompted a consortium led by TotalEnergies SE to stall a $20 billion liquefied natural gas project in the region. Fighting flared around the town of Palma near the project this week, according to two people familiar with the situation.
Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi visited his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame in April, around the same time a SADC summit about the insurgency was postponed.