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The Mozambican government announced yesterday that it was working with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) “to understand” the situation of the 12 Mozambicans detained in that country over suspicion of involvement in armed violence in northern Mozambique.
“The government is aware of the existence of 12 Mozambicans detained in the DR Congo, and we are working through diplomatic channels and with the Defence and Security Forces to understand what is behind all this,” Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation José Pacheco told reporters in Maputo.
Mozambican police confirmed the detention of 12 Mozambican citizens on June 12.
The 12 youths were lured by members of armed groups to travel to DR Congo with the promise of continuing their studies, Mozambican police quoted by Radio Moçambique said at the time.
According to José Pacheco, should their involvement be proven, the group should be “held accountable.”
“Should it be confirmed that they were in a training process, and to prevent citizens from being pushed into being violent against their own brothers, there must be proper accountability,” Pacheco said.
Police say the Mozambicans were recruited in the northern province of Nampula, which neighbour Cabo Delgado, the scene of armed attacks by unknown groups since October 2017.
According to figures collected by Lusa, the wave of violence in Cabo Delgado has already killed about 200 people, including residents, alleged attackers and members of the security forces.
Studies of the origin of the armed groups carrying out the attacks indicate that they may have links with armed groups of jihadist inspiration that operate in some parts of the DRC.
The Islamic State this month issued a statement claiming responsibility for an attack that killed an undetermined number of Mozambicans in clashes in Cabo Delgado. This has been denied by the Mozambican police.Source: Lusa
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