Image created by AI

SANDF Refutes Allegations of Hostage Situation in DRC, Maintains Troops' Safety

Published April 04, 2024
2 months ago

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has categorically denied claims circulated by National Security News that suggested a contingent of South African soldiers surrendered to M23 rebels in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo). The original report insinuated that the South African troops had been captured and held hostage by the rebels during recent clashes in the eastern part of the DRC.

SANDF spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini rebuffed these allegations on Wednesday, emphasizing that all SANDF members deployed in the DRC are accounted for and safe. He condemned the proliferation of such misleading stories, affirming that SANDF holds the well-being and safety of its members in high regard and pledges to keep the South African public informed.

Dlamini's comments come in the wake of political party ActionSA's demand for transparency regarding the safeguarding of South African troops abroad. ActionSA has raised concerns about the reported dire conditions for the SANDF's deployed personnel and questioned the adequacy of support, including critical air and land elements necessary for their operations.

In earlier reports, both President Cyril Ramaphosa and Defence Minister Thandi Modise addressed concerns regarding the SANDF's presence in the DRC. President Ramaphosa assured that the South African troops were sufficiently equipped to engage in military operations within the complex conflict environment of the eastern DRC.

Ramaphosa highlighted the recent losses and challenges faced by the SANDF, including the death of two soldiers and injuries to three others from a mortar bomb at a military base. Despite these adversities, he reaffirmed South Africa's commitment to its peacekeeping mission as part of the country's obligations to the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

The SANDF's involvement in the DRC has experienced increased scrutiny amidst the mounting tensions and violence within the region. An earlier troop deployment of at least 2,900 soldiers to the eastern DRC underscores South Africa's ongoing strategic efforts to suppress the myriad of illicit armed factions and restore peace in the tumultuous region.

As the situation continues to develop, SANDF maintains its stance of transparency and accountability concerning its operations and the status of its personnel on foreign soil.

Leave a Comment

Rate this article:

Please enter email address.
Looks good!
Please enter your name.
Looks good!
Please enter a message.
Looks good!
Please check re-captcha.
Looks good!
Leave the first review