Three Presidents from the African front-line states arrived in Dar es Salaam on Sunday (29 October) for a summit to be chaired by Tanzanian President, Dr.
Three Presidents from the African front-line states arrived in Dar es Salaam on Sunday (29 October) for a summit to be chaired by Tanzanian President, Dr. Julius Nyerere. A notable absentee was President Somora Machel of Mozambique whose boycott emphasised the split which has developed in recent months. The talks aimed at unifying the front-line states ended inconclusively later the same day, and official sources said the Presidents did not confer during the meetings.
SYNOPSIS: President Agostinho Neto of Angola was met at the airport by President Sir Seretse Khama of Botswana and Mr. Nyerere. The front-line group supports the guerrillas of the Rhodesian Patriotic Front in its bush war with government forces of that be leagued Southern African country.
Last to arrive was President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia. Observers said the summit aimed to unify the front-line states following recent policy statements which have caused rifts between members. However, the fifth Head of State, President Somora Machel chose not to attend, and sent no representatives to explain his absence.
The London Observers newspaper said the British and United States governments saw the talks as crucial to the Western initiatives in Rhodesia and Namibia (South West Africa). At the front-line summit at Lusaka in September, the heads of state had split into two groups, with President Nyerere and Machel opposing Presidents Neto and Kaunda. Despite the moderating influence of Sir Seretse Khama, the new talks ended quickly. Informed sources said the Anglo-American plan for Rhodesia was a major stumbling block. A communique from the talks said 'solutions to common problems' were discussed, but it did not mention the split.