Mozambique elections: Polling stations attacked in Sofala and Niassa - AIM
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The African Union Commission welcomed the signing of a peace agreement on Thursday between Mozambique’s President Filipe Nyusi and the leader of the opposition party RENAMO Ossufo Momade to end armed hostilities between government forces and the armed wing of RENAMO.
The former rebel group’s remaining fighters are in the process of disarming just weeks before a visit by Pope Francis and a national election on October 15 that will test the now-political rivals’ new resolve.
Previous elections have been marred by violence with RENAMO claiming that the ruling FRELIMO party rigged the results.
“The Chairperson calls on all national stakeholders to maintain the positive momentum and redouble their efforts towards durable and sustainable peace, reconciliation and stability in the country,” a statement from the AUC chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat read in part.
Mahamat also restated the African Union’s pledge to support the peace process and government efforts towards achieving sustainable socio-economic development in Mozambique.
The permanent ceasefire is the culmination of years of negotiations to end fighting that has flared up several times in the more than 25 years since the end of the civil war in which an estimated 1 million people died.
Pope Francis said he is going to the 30 million people southern African country to push for reconciliation.
The Catholic church in Mozambique helped to negotiate a ceasefire in 1992 and has encouraged peace since then.
RENAMO, which is the Portuguese acronym for National Resistance of Mozambique, became an opposition party after the civil war but had never fully disarmed until now.
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