The UPDF Mountain Division Commander Maj Gen Kayanja Muhanga has met with his DRC counterpart, the Commander of Operation Sukola Grand- Nord, Maj Gen Camille Bombele, for a review of the ongoing joint UPDF and FARDC operations against the ADF in an operation code-named Shujaa.
The meeting was held at the joint tactical headquarters near River Semliki in the North Kivu province of DRC.
The two commanders observed that since the launch of the joint operations on November,30 when four ADF camps of Tondoli, Kambi Yayu, Abia, Belu 1 and Belu 2 were attacked by UPDF air and artillery, the ADF activities have been disrupted.
The commanders agreed on a joint operational plan to step up the operations in different sectors now that the terrorists are no longer encamped, having been dislodged from their former strongholds.
It was also noted during the review meeting that the attack on ADF has restored relative calm in the area, allowing civilians to resume socio-economic activities.
Operation Shujaa, a Kiswahili word to mean “bravery” is being implemented following a Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Uganda and the DRC to conduct joint operations for the eradication of ADF and other foreign armed groups in the eastern part of DRC.
The operations are taking place in Ituri and Grand North Provinces.
It is anticipated that restoration of security will enable road construction works on the Kasindi – Beni – Butembo and Bunagana – Rutshuru – Goma highways by the two countries.
A few days ago, the Ugandan government and its counterparts from DRC signed the final agreement that will ensure joint operations between the armies of both countries
The bilateral general agreement on defence cooperation was signed by Defence Minister Vincent Ssempijja on behalf of Uganda whereas his Congolese counterpart, Dr Gilbert Kabanda Kurhenga signed on behalf of the DRC government.
The agreement established an official legal framework that governs the joint military and defence operations between the two countries.
Whereas both armies have been tightlipped on the number of causalities since the launch of the operation three weeks ago, it was recently reported that 34 “terrorists” had been captured and 31 Congolese hostages freed.
As part of the joint operation soldiers from the UPDF and FADRC continue to track the rebels.