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Ossufo Momade, leader of Mozambique's largest opposition party
In an interview with DW, Ossufo Momade states that “Renamo is not behind these attacks” and “does not claim them”. “It is the sole responsibility of the Mozambican state to investigate them,” the opposition leader adds.
Armed attacks in central Mozambique have intensified In recent weeks. This Tuesday (29/10), an attack on a police station in Metuchira, Sofala province, left one agent dead – the second attack on the police within a week, after an officer was shot down last Wednesday in the area between Nhamatanda and Gorongosa districts.
Speaking to the press last week, police said they believed the perpetrators of Sofala’s attack were dissident Mozambican National Resistance (Renamo) guerrillas headed by Mariano Nhongo, who has already denied the group’s involvement.
At a press conference yesterday (29/10), the Police of the Republic of Mozambique mentioned “being aware that it was Renamo gunmen who attacked the Metuchira police station [in Nhamatanda]”.
Also yesterday, in an interview with DW Africa, Ossufo Momade, the leader of Mozambique’s largest opposition party, denied that the attacks were being perpetrated by his party and asserted that “Renamo will not resort to weapons again.”
Momade recalled that, after signing the peace and national reconciliation agreement in August this year, Renamo had a commitment to the Mozambican people and the country to which it must adhere.
DW Africa: Since the election results have been announced, the attacks have intensified in the central region of the country. Is Renamo behind these attacks?
Ossufo Momade (OM): Renamo signed the cessation of hostilities agreement on 1 August, and on 6 August we signed the peace and reconciliation agreement. This is to say that Renamo is not behind these attacks and that we do not assume them as we have commitments to the Mozambicans and the country. It is the sole responsibility of the Mozambican state to investigate these attacks, which have nothing to do with Renamo. We condemn them, as we would not like to see the Mozambican people suffering from attacks, as in the past. We are not part of this group.
DW Africa: Under no circumstances would Renamo consider returning to the woods …?
OM: We never said that. We are fulfilling the commitment we made on August 6, when we signed the peace and reconciliation agreement. What happened, happened. It has nothing to do with the shooting that is happening right now. It is the Mozambican people who must assume the greatest responsibility, because it was the people who went to vote. That’s why Renamo will never resort to guns.
DW Africa: Renamo dominates much of that central region. Must it eventually know who is launching these attacks?
OM: It is not our responsibility. This is the responsibility of the Mozambican state, which has to do the due diligence and find out, through its services, who is the author of the attacks. Renamo ceased hostilities and signed the peace and reconciliation agreement. From August 6th, we are not responsible for any citizen who shoots any vehicle. We distance ourselves from these attacks.
Source: Deutsche Welle
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