Maputo — The Anglo-Australian mining company Rio Tinto on Wednesday advised families of its foreign workers in Mozambique to return temporarily to their home countries, because of the clashes between the Mozambican army and police and gunmen of the former rebel movement Renamo.
A source in the company's local subsidiary, Rio Tinto Coal Mozambique confirmed to the independent newsheet “Mediafax” that the company “has asked the families of its foreign workers to return to their counties of origin”.
“The safety of employees and their families is the number one priority”, the company declared.
But the company has not interrupted production, and says that the mining and export of coal will continue as planned. Rio Tinto operates an enormous open cast coal mine at Benga, in the Moatize coal basin in the western province of Tete.
Rio Tinto works in a part of the country where here have been no clashes. No military incidents have been reported anywhere in Tete.
The great majority of the clashes have occurred in Sofala province. There has also been a focus of disturbances in Rapale district in the northern province of Rapale. There have been no clashes between Renamo and the defence and security forces anywhere else in the country.