SADC Heads of State to meet today over Mozambique attacks

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Botswana’s President Mokgweetsi Masisi has convened Thursday’s Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State meeting in Maputo, Mozambique.

The aim of the Extraordinary Double Troika Summit is to come up with an action plan on how to respond to militant attacks on Mozambique’s northern region of Cabo Delgado.

Last month, dozens of people including a South African man were killed when the militants attacked a hotel in the town of Palma.

The much-awaited summit comes at a time where SADC received criticism for its quiet diplomacy approach to Mozambique’s terrorism problem.

SABC News foreign editor Sophie Mokoena shares more on the summit:

The conflict, which broke out in 2017, has displaced over 700 000 Mozambicans.

The United Nations (UN) describes the situation as a humanitarian crisis and gross violation of human rights.

President Cyril Ramaphosa will attend the double summit in his capacity as incoming chairperson of SADC’s organ on politics, security and defence. He will be joined by his counterparts from Malawi, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Botswana.

On Wednesday – senior security and defence officials and ministers held a meeting as a pre-cursor to the double summit.

Most important security meeting SADC leaders have ever held:

Director of the Centre for African Studies at the University of Johannesburg  Dr David Monyae says the Double Troika is one of the most important security meetings that SADC leaders have ever held.

“It’s a meeting that is way overdue as the crisis escalates in Mozambique. The regional leaders will try to find a comprehensive solution to this crisis which is more than just a conflict. It relates to issues of poverty, mass movement of people with no food and it’s a real crisis for SADC,” says Monyae.