Over 2 000 South African soldiers are fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of the SADC Standby Force.
Darren Stewart /Gallo Images
- South Africa has 2 900 soldiers fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Standby Force.
- Their deployment for this year will cost R2 billion.
- The SADC Standby Force replaced the East African Community Regional Force, while the UN Organisation Stabilisation Mission in the DCR is leaving the war-ravaged country.
South Africa’s contingent of 2 900 soldiers deployed to the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is expected to cost “just over R2 billion”, as the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (SAMIDRC) takes on a year-long tour to help stabilise that troubled region.
The SAMIDRC is under the command of SA National Defence Force (SANDF) Major-General Monwabisi Dyakopu.
It also has Malawian, Tanzanian and the DRC’s national troops.
The deployment of the SAMIDRC follows the principle of collective self-defence and collective action outlined in the SADC Mutual Defence Pact, which states: “Any armed attack perpetrated against one of the state parties shall be considered a threat to regional peace and security, and shall be met with immediate collective action.”
Dyakopu is on his fourth mission to the DRC. He has also served in Ethiopia and Eritrea as a peacekeeper.
SANDF commander-in-chief President Cyril Ramaphosa has defended his deployment of the force as “South Africa’s international obligation” towards the SADC.
“The employment will cover the period from 15 December 2023 to 15 December 2024, and it was authorised in accordance with the provisions of Section 201(2)(c) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa.
“The budgeted expenditure to be incurred for the employment amounts to just over R2 billion. This expenditure will not impact provisions for the defense force’s regular maintenance and emergency repairs,” Ramaphosa said in a statement.
SOUTH AFRICA CONTRIBUTES TROOPS TO SADC MISSION TO THE DRC In fulfilling South Africa’s international obligation towards the Southern African Development Community (SADC) mission to support the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), President @CyrilRamaphosa ordered the employment…
— #SONA2024 | Presidency ???? (@PresidencyZA) February 12, 2024
There have been no South African or SAMIDRC casualties reported.
At the request of France, the UN Security Council will on Tuesday hold closed-door consultations on the situation in the DRC.
The UN Organisation Stabilisation Mission in the DCR (MONUSCO) has been withdrawing from the DRC since December, after the East African Community Regional Force also left the country at the behest of the hosts.
However, while still in the country, MONUSCO has “Operation Springbok” in place to ensure safe passage for the internally displaced by the conflict in North Kivu.
The force also creates humanitarian corridors for the provision of much-needed aid.
Rwanda is accused of aiding and supporting the M23 rebels to destabilise eastern DRC, although longtime Rwandan President Paul Kagame has denied this.
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Source link : https://www.news24.com/news24/africa/news/the-cost-of-war-sa-spends-just-over-r2-billion-in-peacekeeping-mission-to-the-drc-20240213
Publish date : 2024-02-13 09:02:00