South Africa’s Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has said the Rwandan troops were not supposed to arrive in Mozambique before the regional ones.
The minister said it was not agreed by the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) heads of state that Rwandan troops would arrive first.
“It is regrettable that this dispatch takes place before the deployment of Sadc troops, because whatever the bilateral relations between Rwanda and Mozambique, one would expect Rwanda to go to Mozambique in the context of a mandate given by heads of state in the Sadc region,” she said.
The minister said this was a bilateral issue, “a situation over which we have no control”.
The Sadc troops are expected to arrive in Mozambique on Thursday.
Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi confirmed the arrival of the Rwandan troops to support the fight against terror attacks that have devastated some districts of northern Cabo Delgado, since October 2017.