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Picture: Twitter / @IOMchief
Antonio Vitorino, Director-General of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), yesterday offered to help the President of Mozambique combat armed attacks in the north of the country.
“I expressed my willingness to support the Government of Mozambique in what it deemed necessary to do to prevent the radicalisation and violent extremism that may occur in some area of the territory,” Vitorino said.
The head of the United Nations body was speaking at a press conference in Maputo on Monday during a visit to Mozambique to learn about the support provided to displaced people following the cyclones of the beginning of the year.
Humanitarian assistance was on the agenda of a meeting with the Mozambican president, Filipe Nyusi, as were the attacks in Cabo Delgado.
“IOM has experience in many countries dealing with situations of violence and radical extremism,” in order to “ensure community stability,” Vitorino told reporters.
The IOM Director-General did not elaborate further on the situation which, according to reports from the population and the media, has displaced thousands in the last two years.
According to figures collected by Lusa, the wave of violence in Cabo Delgado since 2017 has already caused the deaths of some 200 people, including residents, alleged perpetrators and members of the security forces.
The attacks have taken place in the region where natural gas exploration works are planned over the coming years.
The Islamic State jihadist group announced in June for the first time that it was associated with one of the attacks.
Today I met the President of Mozambique @fnyusi, where 1.8 million people have been affected by two cyclones this year.
IOM remains committed to working with authorities to support vulnerable communities. pic.twitter.com/81QtP5CdpN
— António Vitorino (@IOMchief) August 19, 2019
I visited Mandruzi resettlement site in Mozambique today, where 100s of families displaced by cyclone #Idai are rebuilding their lives. Their resilience and hard work are inspiring but continued shelter, health, and community infrastructure support is needed. pic.twitter.com/zuqorICRlc
— António Vitorino (@IOMchief) August 20, 2019