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Saturday, 25 December, 1999, 19:50 GMT
Angola claims rebel base




By Angola correspondent Lara Pawson

The Angolan government has announced the capture of Jamba, once the headquarters of the rebel group, Unita.

The town lies in the far south-east corner of Angola, close to the border with Zambia and Namibia.

For the past month, Angolan and Namibian forces have been fighting against Unita rebels along the frontier between the two countries.

The capture of Jamba, says the government, represents its almost complete control of the border.

On a symbolic level, the loss of Jamba, Unita's headquarters between 1975 and 1991, is almost as damaging to the rebels as the fall of its central highlands headquarters, Andulo and Bailundo, in October.

On Saturday, Angolan state radio said the government's capture of Jamba is the culmination of over a month of fighting against rebel positions along the Namibian border.

Since the end of November, Angolan Government troops have gained control of three other significant towns situated on the frontier - Kuangar, Calai and Mucusso.

A senior army source said the capture of Jamba means the government almost has complete control of the southern frontier.

The government also claims that more than 200 Unita troops in Cuando Cubango Province have recently surrendered to the national army.

Further north, in the diamond-rich province of Lundo Sul, the government says it has taken control of every single municipality in the province.

Unita has yet to deny or confirm the latest claims of the Angolan government

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See also:
17 Dec 99 |  Africa
Unita is finished, says Angolan army
16 Dec 99 |  Africa
Report suggests Ugandan help for Unita
09 Dec 99 |  Africa
Angolan refugees flee into Zambia
01 Feb 99 |  Angola
Profile: Jonas Savimbi, Unita's local boy
16 Nov 99 |  Africa
'End of war in sight' - Angolan general
20 Oct 99 |  Africa
Angolan Government confirms Bailundo victory
25 Aug 99 |  Africa
Angola: Desperate days in a town under siege
20 Dec 99 |  Africa
Angolan war spills into Namibia

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