Southern African Development Community (SADC) at a summit on Wednesday in Malawi pledged to lengthen its troop mission in Mozambique.
“Summit noted the good progress made since the deployment of the SADC Mission in Mozambique and extended its mandate,” the communique said after leaders met in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe.
According to the communique, the move is to help the Mozambique government fight an Islamic State-linked insurgency that began since 2017 and has claimed thousands of life.
SADC sent troops to Mozambique last year June after the Islamist radicals began terrorising residents of northern Cabo Delgado province.
The deployment was initially for three months from mid-July but it was extended in October.
Southern African leaders said they’ve made progress in fighting the insurgents, but security experts note there are still challenges and dialogue should be an option.
SADC chairperson and Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera in his closing remarks at the summit said “the bold and decisive step taken to extend the mission in Mozambique will enable them consolidate and sustain the gains the bloc has made thus far.
“Until victory and peace is secured, we will not relent, we will not regress and we will not retreat,” he added.