4 September 2014

Mozambique: Guebuza's Office Confirms Meeting With Dhlakama

Maputo — Edson Macuacua, the spokesperson for Mozambican President Armando Guebuza, on Thursday confirmed to reporters that the long awaiting meeting between Guebuza and the leader of the former rebel movement Renamo, Afonso Dhlakama, will be held in Maputo on Friday.

At a Maputo press conference, Macuacua said Guebuza and Dhlakama will put their seal of approval on the cessation of hostilities agreed on 24 August, in the dialogue between the government and Renamo.

Appended to the declaration calling a halt to all military hostilities are the three documents agreed earlier in the dialogue, on 11 August. These include the Memorandum of Understanding dealing with such sensitive matters as disarming what it calls Renamo's “residual forces”, and integrating them into the armed forces, the police or civilian society.

The other documents are a set of guarantees demanded by Renamo and the terms of reference for the foreign military observers who will monitor the cessation of hostilities.

“The necessary preparations are under way for holding the meeting between President Guebuza and the Renamo leader”, said Macuacua. He added that, after the two leaders have formally approved the documents, they will be submitted to the country's parliament, the Assembly of the Republic, for ratification

In order to meet Dhlakama, Guebuza has interrupted his participation in the election campaign of the ruling Frelimo Party, and its presidential candidate Filipe Nyusi, and has returned to Maputo.

Dhlakama is expected to arrive in Maputo on Thursday afternoon. The arrangements have been shrouded in secrecy, but he is expected to travel from the central city of Chimoio, possibly in an aircraft provided by the Italian government.

Renamo has urged all its members and supports in the capital to turn out at the airport to welcome Dhlakama.

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