Uganda: April 17, 2002


Ugandan Defense Minister Amama Mbabazi told a press conference on 14 April that a group of about several thousand Lord's Resistance Army rebels, who had gone south in late March, were trapped by the UDPF. 

After being defeated by Uganda's Operation "Iron Fisted" late in March, the LRA rebels split into three groups, with the main fighting force led by rebel leader Joseph Kony fleeing south. This group had about 1,000 family members of rebel commanders and fighters. UDPF units supported by tanks and BM21 multiple rocket launchers had finally trapped them at a southern Sudanese mountain about 35 kilometers (21 miles) from the border with Uganda, but the rebels had little food, medicine or ammunition.

The two other, smaller, groups were used as diversionary targets. The UDPF had recent contact with one of these small groups when it returned to the overran camps, hoping to retrieve some supplies. The Ugandans killed six rebels and recovered two anti-aircraft missiles.

LRA military vehicles and ammunition had been handed over to Sudanese military intelligence chief Major General Sherff Mohjubu at Lubang Tek in a video-taped ceremony. The Sudanese had supplied these same arms to the LRA, but the Ugandans were now convinced that Khartoum had cut ties to Kony. - Adam Geibel


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