Wreckage and abandoned United Nations army equipment littered the streets of Matadi - 60 miles from the mouth of the Congo River - Mar. 6 after a 24-hour battle in which Congolese troops ousted a Sudanese U.
Wreckage and abandoned United Nations army equipment littered the streets of Matadi - 60 miles from the mouth of the Congo River - Mar. 6 after a 24-hour battle in which Congolese troops ousted a Sudanese U.N. contingent from the port, killing at least two of them, wounding 13, and disarming the rest.
Matadi - supply centre for the United Nations force in the congo - was guarded by 135 Sudanese troops, who also kept watch over a Canadian signals centre in the port. The battle began at Midday, Mar. 4, with an attack on the Canadian post. Later the Congolese, believed to be 1,000 strong, shelled the Sudanese camp with mortars and armour-piercing weapons. They threatened to throw in the whole of the Thysville garrison - some 2,000 men with armour and artillery - if the sudanese did not retire.
Ceasefire talks were held, and M. Albert Delvaux, acting Prime Minister in the Leopoldville Government, ordered the Sudanese to be disarmed. Equipped only with small arms and running out of ammunition, the Sudanese submitted to the order and were flown to Leopoldville. The Matadi incident followed a similar clash at nearby Banana, where Sudanese troops were also forced to withdraw.
At a press conference in Leopoldville, Mar. 7, M. Delvaux alleged that the first shots in the Banana and Matadi battles had been fired by the Sudanese. Attacking U.N. special representative Dayal, he added: "We are ready to consider collaboration with the United Nations on condition that hey withdraw immediately from strategic placer at present occupied by our troops on our national territory.