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Angolan And Zambian Military Officials Meet On Border Raids - 2003-09-03

Senior Angolan military officers are in Zambia to discuss security along the common border of the two countries. Recently, a group of Zambians sued the Angolan government over incursions by armed fighters believed to be from Angola. Reporter Kellys Kaunda has that story from Lusaka.

TEXT: The nine-member delegation is led by Agostinho Fernandes Nelumba who is the chief of the general staff of the Angolan armed forces.

General Nelumba says there is a need to stop the incursions on the Zambia/Angola western border.

He says the incursions are an embarrassment to both Zambia and Angola. He says the two countries are in the process of establishing measures to resolve the problem.

On several occasions, suspected Angolan soldiers have raided villages along Zambia’s western border with the former Portuguese colony.

In the process, property has been destroyed, livestock stolen, people abducted, women raped and human lives lost.

Sometimes villages have been deserted and schools closed for fear of attacks that at one time would happen almost every week.

In response, the Zambian government has held high-level meetings between political leaders and security personnel from the two countries.

The current visit is believed to be part of efforts by the two countries to find a lasting solution to the problem especially now that the civil war in Angola is over.

Recently, a group of Zambians living on the Zambia/Angola border filed a lawsuit in the Zambian courts against the Angolan government.

The victims of the incursions are seeking compensation from the Angola government for the damage and loss suffered.

But the Zambian government has said there was no need to sue because it has began to address the problem.