Rwandan troops, aided by Mozambican security forces, on Sunday, Aug. 8, took the coastal city of Mocimboa da Praia, a significant insurgent stronghold with a district headquarters and an airport.
Rwanda dispatched 1,000 soldiers last month to help Mozambique authorities retake control of the northern Cabo Delgado province.
HumAngle has seen videos of the Rwandan army patrolling the city of Mocimboa da Praia after it was liberated from the insurgents.
After more than two years of insurgency in the city, an airplane has landed at its airport for the first time.
One of Africa’s largest natural gas plants is located in the city which has been under the grip of ISIS-linked terrorists for two years.
Since last year, the port town, from which the first militant attacks were launched in October 2017, has served as the militants’ de facto headquarters.
“The port city of Mocimboa da Praia, a major stronghold of the insurgency for more than two years, has been captured by Rwandan and Mozambican security forces,” the Rwanda Defence Forces said in a tweet.
Colonel Ronald Rwivanga, Forces’ spokesman confirmed this to the AFP news agency, saying “yes [Mocimboa da Praia] has fallen.”
Last week, the soldiers reported their first success since arriving, claiming to have assisted the Mozambican army in regaining control of Awasse, a small but strategically important village near Mocimboa da Praia.
An expert familiar with the insurgency in Mozambique said “the militants have lost the city of Macimboa da Praia, but have moved into the jungle from where they’re going to launch a new insurgency campaign.”
The expert source added that, “suicide bombings and raids on the city and it’s surroundings as well as on the government and foreign military installations are going to be witnessed until the terrorists have been fully eliminated from the jungle.”
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