Maputo — Terrorist groups on Tuesday attacked five communities in Quissanga district, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, according to a report in Wednesday's issue of the independent newssheet "Carta de Mocambique".
The attacks were against the villages of Nraha 2, Mussomero, Namidai, Namiruma and Mahate. The raiders burnt down homes and the Mahate health centre and beheaded seven of their victims. The terrorists intercepted these people as they were on their way to work their fields.
Survivors of the attack on Mahate, cited in Wednesday's issue of the daily paper "O Pais", said they believed the insurgents were now threatening to attack Quissanga town, which is about 100 kilometres north of the provincial capital, Pemba.
One source told the paper the insurgents used a megaphone to make this threat, while they were burning down the houses of the local population.
On Monday, the terrorists attacked Mianguelua village, in Muidumbe district, for the second time in two months
President Filipe Nyusi confirmed this attack during his speech in Maputo on Monday, at the opening of the 2020 judicial year.
"Yesterday they attacked a village in Quissanga", he said. "They also attacked Miangelua before dawn. And our young soldiers are there".
"The murders are a reality", said Nyusi. "People are dying, but cases have come to trial". He was apparently replying to remarks made earlier in the ceremony by the chairperson of the Mozambique Bar Association (OAM), Flavio Menete, who called on the authorities to take action to halt the slaughter and destruction.
"They also warned us that they want to enter the city of Pemba in the coming days", said another man who had escaped from the insurgents in Mahate.
Meanwhile, veterans of Mozambique's ten year war for independence, now living in Nampula, have called on Nyusi to give them guns and send them to the front in Cabo Delgado.
Speaking to reporters in Nampula, on Sunday, Mozambican Heroes' Day, members of the Association of Veterans of the Liberation Struggle (ACLLN), accused Nyusi and the government of sending "kids" to Cabo Delgado rather than accepting their offer to fight.
ACLLN member Jacinto Kavandane said "We veterans are prepared to fight in this war. It's just a case of Nyusi calling on the veterans to come and fight".
"I want to go and fight against those who are murdering people in the villages", he added. "They can't deny us guns".
He denied that the former guerrilla fighters are too old and sick to play a useful combat role. The younger men among the veterans, he insisted, wanted to fight.
"We want to fight", declared Kavandane. "We should not just watch as insurgents behead people".