Ugandan contingent of EACRF completes exit from Eastern DRC » Capital News

NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 15 — The Ugandan Contingent under the East African Community Regional Force (EACRF) has completed their exit from the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo following expiry of the Force mandate on December 8.

Uganda deployed its troops in Mabenga, Chengerero, Kiwanja and Bunagana in Rutshuru territory, North Kivu.

Contingent Commander Col Walaka Hyeroba said all troops and Ugandan-owned equipment exited DRC soil on December 14.

He said that his forces worked closely with the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the local population and expressed regret over the premature withdrawal of EACRF.

He singled out the Disarmament, Demobilization, Community Recovery and Stabilization Programme (PDDRCS) that was yet to commence as the most critical phase of the EACRF mission that would have led to cessation of hostilities.

Uganda was among the Troop Contributing Countries to the DRC alongside Burundi, Kenya, South Sudan and Tanzania, Uganda.

Kenya has so far withdrawn two units with the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) saying on December 10 it will continue withdrawing troops from DRC in an orderly manner.

Deputy Army Commander, Major General David Tarus, who received more troops of the Kenyan Contingent under the East African Community Regional Force (EACRF) at Embakasi Garrison, Nairobi, on Sunday said the expertise displayed enabled them to achieve their objective in their area of operation.

Return of Kenya’s troops

Tarus welcomed the soldiers back to the country and lauded them for their stellar efforts in the stabilisation of the eastern part of DRC.

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He further noted that the Kenyan contingent is and will continue to exit the Eastern region in an orderly manner as the mission transitions.

“It is our greatest desire to see that there is peace in Eastern DRC. The KDF will continue to support DRC in the stabilisation efforts geared towards attainment of peace,” he said.

EAC Chiefs of Defence Forces/Staff met in Arusha, Tanzania, on December 6 and adopted the report of the Defence Experts Working Group on EACRF’s exit plan, which recommended the withdrawal be done in three phases, spanning from December 8 to January 7, 2024.

They further recommended that FARDC, DRC’s military, occupies the positions vacated by EACRF.

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