Tensions Surge In Cabinda: Independence Movement Clashes With Angola And DRC Forces

(MENAFN- The Rio Times) The Cabinda independence movement recently accused the armed forces
of Angola and the Democratic
Republic of the Congo (DRC) of a joint military operation against their guerrillas.

Jacinto António Télica, Secretary-General of the Front for the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda- armed forces
of Cabinda (FLEC-FAC), stated that over 5,000 soldiers
were deployed.

In addition, these soldiers were positioned in the Maiombe forests and along the Angola-DRC border.

FLEC-FAC claims Angolan soldiers committed severe human rights abuses in the village of Mbaka-Nkosi. Allegations include the rape of women and the beating of men who defended their families.

The movement condemned these actions as part of a broader pattern of human rights violations.

They called on the United Nations and the European Union to intervene and hold the Angolan government accountable.

Historical grievances drive the ongoing conflict in Cabinda. FLEC argues Cabinda was a Portuguese protectorate, established by the Treaty of Simulambuco in 1885, not an integral part of Angola.

The region is strategically significant due to its substantial oil reserves. Cabinda produces a large portion of Angola's oil, making it economically crucial.
Conflict and Instability in Cabinda
Despite the Angolan government's denial of instability in the region, FLEC-FAC reports ongoing skirmishes and attacks.

These conflicts have caused casualties among both military personnel and civilians. Widespread fear and displacement plague the local population.

In addition to the recent operation, FLEC-FAC denounced what it describes as "severe repression" by Angolan President João Lourenço's regime against Cabinda's population.

They reiterated their appeal to international bodies such as the U and the EU to address these violations urgently. They aim to ensure the free expression of the people of Cabinda.

The Angolan government typically does not acknowledge the deaths of soldiers or instability in the northern province. It emphasizes the territorial unity of the country.

The FLEC has fought for Cabinda's independence for many years, citing its historical status as a Portuguese protectorate and its significant contributions to Angola's oil wealth.

The region's unresolved status continues to fuel conflict, impacting local and regional stability.