INTRODUCTION The President of Zaire, Mobutu Sese Seko, reviewed the progress of his armed forces in their battle against rebel insurgents in the town of Mustshatsha on Tuesday (26 April).
INTRODUCTION The President of Zaire, Mobutu Sese Seko, reviewed the progress of his armed forces in their battle against rebel insurgents in the town of Mustshatsha on Tuesday (26 April). The village was re-captured by Zairean forces on Monday (April 25), backed by Moroccan troops. Its capture turns the tide of war in favour of the Government forces who until then were having difficulty in containing the rebel advance.
SYNOPSIS: The rebels left their marks on a dusty railway station. Inside, the offices had been ??? and outside were slogans abusing President Mobutu.
President Mobutu posed for photographed in his camouflage uniform. He told journalists his troops were now moving closer to the Angolan border from where, it is claimed, the rebel troops started out eight weeks ago. They have, until now, been meeting very little resistance.
The President, clearly relishing his forces' first major victory in the fighting, displayed captured weapon bearing Chinese, U.S. and Soviet markings. He claims the invaders had Soviet and Cuban help, and said Zaire will do its best to prevent Soviet influence in Africa. The Soviet Union has denied any part in the invasion.
The Government forces say they had little trouble in re-taking the town. Some streets were sprinkled with spent small arms cartridges, but there was little sign of major fighting. Only a handful of buildings were badly damaged, Some of the Moroccan soldiers helping the Zaireans joked with reporters saying that the war was not providing them with enough action.
The troops then prepared for their next major objective...the town of Kasaji where there has been no word for several weeks about 12 British, New Zealand, Canadian and Australian missionaries. Two organisations claim to be behind the fighting - the National Congo Liberation Front and the Popular Armed Forces of the Congo. Many are thought to be former ??? who left the area, formerly Katanga, after the civil war following independence.
A unit of Zaire's north Korean trained Kamanyola Brigade spent their free time singing war songs to entertain the President.