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Tuesday, 13 November, 2001, 08:54 GMT
Angolan envoy summoned in Lusaka
Angolan refugees
Thousands of Angolans have fled to Zambia
The Zambian authorities have summoned the Angolan ambassador to express their concern over a cross-border raid by Angolan government troops.

At least seven Zambians were killed and dozens more abducted last Friday.

Unita soldier
Unita has been fighting for more than 25 years
Zambia's Information Minister, Vernon Mwaanga, told the BBC's Network Africa that the two countries had agreed to work together to investigate the cause of the incident and track down the perpetrators.

Mr Mwaanga said 20 of those who were abducted were still unaccounted for. 83 people, mostly women and children from the western district of Shang'ombo, have been released, along with several heads of cattle.

Correspondents say the reason for the raid is still not clear although it is thought the Angolan troops entered Zambia in pursuit of Unita rebels.

Headmaster

Zambian police spokesperson Lemmy Kajoba said that one of those killed was the headmaster of a local school.

Mr Kajoba said two others - both men - are said to have serious gun-shot wounds, which might prove fatal.

It is not known where exactly in Angola the Zambian villagers are being held.

The Angolan troops have not yet established contact with Zambian security personnel.

On Monday, a few Zambians who managed to escape capture by Angolan soldiers began slowly returning to their villages, some of which have been ransacked.

Looting

Mr Kajoba said the Unita rebels have since gone back to Angola

This year, Angolan troops have frequently entered Zambia chasing Unita forces but on many occasions they have ended up looting property, destroying houses and stealing several herds of cattle.

Until this incident, tensions between Angola and Zambia had been improving.

In recent years, Angola has accused senior Zambian officials of backing Unita rebels.

In the past week, there has been an upsurge in the number of Angolan refugees crossing into Zambia.

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 ON THIS STORY
Vernon Mwaanga, Zambia Information Minister
"Regrettably, the level of tension has risen on the border:
See also:

12 Nov 01 | Africa
Angolan troops abduct Zambians
09 Nov 01 | Africa
Angola warns new conscripts
01 Nov 01 | Africa
Signs of peace in Angola
23 Oct 01 | Africa
Angolan election pledge
01 Jun 00 | Africa
Angola warns Zambia
26 May 00 | Africa
Zambian leader warns Angola
10 Dec 99 | Africa
Angolan refugees flee into Zambia
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