Kampala — Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni in his New Year message on Sunday called for a joint regional effort to defeat the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) operating in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
Museveni said that Great Lakes actors need to pacify eastern DRC where ADF has continued to recruit and train its fighters.
The Great Lakes states include Uganda, DRC, Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Zambia.
Museveni said Uganda is ready to cross into DRC's North Kivu Province to assist in hunting the rebels if the authorities in Kinshasa give the mandate to do so.
"If the Congolese government so decides we can assist them uproot the ADF from that area," said Museveni.
Uganda is seeking authorization from the DRC government to allow its troops to cross into eastern DRC to pursue the rebel group currently causing havoc in North Kivu.
On Dec. 22, Uganda People's Defense Forces (UPDF) used its jet fighters and artillery fire to attack the outfit's bases in the jungles of DRC's North Kivu, according to the Ugandan military.
The army said over 100 rebel fighters were killed in the operation sparked by the group's attack on the UN peacekeepers, which killed 15 Tanzanian blue helmets and five DRC troops. Xinhua