KINSHASA (Reuters) – Special forces from the United States will quickly deploy to Democratic Republic of Congo’s restive east to gauge the potential for a neighborhood anti-terrorism unit to fight Islamist violence, President Felix Tshisekedi mentioned on Sunday.
The Special Operations Forces arrived in Congo’s capital Kinshasa on Friday to “conduct an assessment of a future Congolese counter-terrorism team,” U.S. ambassador Mike Hammer mentioned.
Tshisekedi mentioned in a press release on Sunday that the troops would “provide support to the (army) in the fight against terrorism and to the guardians of the Virunga and Garamba national parks, which have become a sanctuary for terrorist forces.”
He mentioned the troops could be current for a number of weeks in japanese Congo, the place martial legislation was established in May to attempt to finish many years of bloodshed.
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Data collected by the Kivu Security Tracker, which maps unrest within the area, attributes a lot of the latest violence to the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), an Islamist-inspired insurgency which U.S. officers have linked to Islamic State.
The ADF, initially from Uganda, has been blamed for dozens of massacres within the final three years, largely in distant villages with hatchets and firearms.
Islamic State has claimed duty for a number of the killings, however United Nations specialists have doubted the militant group’s affect over ADF operations.
Some assaults blamed on the ADF may have been dedicated by different militias, or by factions of Congo’s personal military, U.N. and unbiased specialists have mentioned.
The U.N. has discovered that the ADF is getting higher at making bombs, however that they’re used for “tactical, offensive, defensive and harassment purposes rather than as a terrorist tool”.
(Reporting by Hereward Holland, Editing by Cooper Inveen and Timothy Heritage)
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