Uganda has killed more than 560 members of an Islamic State-allied rebel group since launching operations against them in December 2021, President Yoweri Museveni said.
The anti-Kampala group Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) is based in the jungles in the east of neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo from where it launches attacks both within Congo and Uganda.
After securing Congo’s permission, Uganda’s military in launched operations there against ADF seeking to destroy their camps and kill or capture the group’s combatants.
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In a speech late on Thursday Museveni said 567 of ADF’s fighters had been killed and another 50 captured. He said sub machine guns and rocket propelled grenades were among 167 pieces of equipment retrieved from the rebels.
“They are desperate … the only option for them is to surrender,” Museveni said.
Museveni urged Ugandan operators of buses, markets and hotels to be vigilant and register all customers to prevent possible ADF attackers from using their facilities.
This week, Ugandan police said they had retrieved at least six improvised explosive devices that ADF attackers planned to use, including one that they got from an assailant just outside a church he was about to enter.
In two of the group’s most devastating attacks in Uganda, suicide attacks in 2021 outside a major police station in the capital and near the parliament building left seven people dead.
In June this year 42 people, mostly students, were massacred at a school in Kasese in Western Uganda.