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Escalating violence forces thousands to flee Mozambique

 

30/12/2016 00:00:00
by TVC News
 
Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama
 
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MOZAMBIQUE'S silent war between government troops and opposition fighters, have continued to disrupt lives.

The clashes between longtime rivals, the Frelimo government and Renamo, an armed insurgent group and also an elected opposition party, has revived the civil war that ended more than 20 years ago.

TVC News Taiwo Baruwa reports that Mozambique is still recovering from its bloody 1976-1992 civil war that killed an estimated one million people during years of sporadic fighting between Frelimo and Renamo.

But tensions have returned since 2013 when Renamo fighters again took up arms against Frelimo, accusing the ruling party of enriching itself at the expense of the southern African country.

Since May 2016 the attacks have sharply increased prompting more people to flee the Southern African Country.

More than 15,000 people have forcefully relocated to government owned camps at a border town between Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Titus Albaosui is one of 3,100 people now living in the five government camps he arrived at Vanduzi camp with his wife and father

Albaosui who managed to escape the fighting between government troops and rebel forces raging across central Mozambique and raising fears of civil war says he could no longer stay in his home

Authorities estimate several thousand more internally displaced people have escaped the conflict zone to stay with relatives elsewhere.

United Nations refugee agency says 8,600 people have also fled from the conflict in neighbouring Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Key players in this insurgency have been trading blames and according to Teixeira Almeida, provincial director of the National Institute for Disaster Management.

Many displaced people would contest the claim that Renamo is responsible for the unrest.

But a local Renamo representative has also accused the government of running the camps only for her Frelimo supporters.

Despite being a government owned camp the Vanduzi camp with 40 tents pitched in straight lines and a basic health clinic for its 800 inhabitants, the drinking water tank here has been empty for two weeks and makeshift toilets here have also been destroyed in a storm.

Death toll in this unrest remains unknown but scores of people are reported to have been killed this year, with both the Frelimo and Renamo parties also suffering assassinations of local politicians.



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As the tension continues,tentative moves were made in recent months towards holding peace talks under international mediation coordinated by the European Union.


 
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