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Malawi prepares soldiers for DRC peacekeeping

By Peter Kanjere:

Malawi Defence Force (MDF) will send the next contingent of soldiers to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on a United Nations-sanctioned peace-keeping mission in August 2019, army spokesperson, Paul Chiphwanya, confirmed on Monday.

In view of the DRC assignment, three British Army instructors are drilling their 30 counterparts at the Malawi Armed Forces College in Salima District, Chiphwanya said.

“It is a trainer-of-trainers’ exercise that takes place when there is a requirement. After the training, we expect that they will impart the knowledge in the next contingent of soldiers that will go to the DRC in August,” he said.

The course will run for two weeks and comes three months after six Malawian soldiers died on duty in the DRC while on peace-keeping mission.

Two soldiers for Malawi are still missing after being attacked by rebels in North Kivu. Chiphwanya refused to comment on the missing soldiers.

British Army’s Captain, Thomas Straken, told Malawi News Agency that the training would help prevent a recurrence of the DRC incident.

“We believe the training will equip the soldiers with techniques to prevent what happened previously in DRC when MDF lost some of its soldiers on a peace-keeping mission,” Straken told the press in Salima.

The United States and British government are MDF partners in training programmes.

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