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Monday, 20 December, 1999, 15:21 GMT
Angolan war spills into Namibia




By Angola correspondent Lara Pawson

Angola's border with Namibia has seen increased military activity in the last week, with Angolan Government troops operating from bases in both countries to try to stop Unita rebels from leaving Angolan territory.

Angola
Since 14 December more than 10 civilians have been killed and one Namibian soldier shot dead by Unita troops inside Namibia.

The deaths have whipped up national Namibian sentiment against Angola's rebel group, a diplomat in Luanda said.

The Namibian Government recently stepped up assistance to Angola by calling on its own troops to fight alongside the Angolan army.

The decision has been criticised by opposition groups in Namibia which view it as a u-turn in policy since the recent elections.

Last weekend, a Namibian human rights organisation also criticised Zimbabwe which allegedly has also sent troops to the area.

Unita stronghold targetted


BMP-2 tank Government forces recently captured Unita weaponry
The intensification of fighting along the border, is, according to one Angolan army official, a crucial part of operations to totally liquidate Unita.

A military analyst in Luanda said the Angolan army is shoring up the border with Namibia as part of a broader attempt to take control of Jamba, Unita's former stronghold in the south-east corner of the country.

He said that if Unita loses Jamba, it will be equivalent in psychological terms to the fall of Andulo and Bailundu - Unita's strongholds taken by the government in October.

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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

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