South Africa lost 13 soldiers in CAR.
South Africa has withdrawn all its troops from the Central African Republic, the military said in a statement on Tuesday.
“All the SANDF personnel who were still in the CAR have been withdrawn and are back home safe and are receiving all the professional support they require,” Brig.-Gen. Xolani Mabanga said in a statement, referring to the military by its acronym.
South Africa lost 13 soldiers and 27 were injured as rebels took over the capital Bangui late in March. Mr. Mabanga said the army had killed between 600 and 1,000 rebel fighters during the nine-hour battle which the government described as an “ambush”.
The South African troops, said to number more than 200 at the peak of their deployment, were in CAR to train its military.
The initial deployment of several dozens of soldiers was agreed with the then CAR President, Francois Bozize, in 2007.
South African President, Jacob Zuma, has come under pressure from the media and the opposition over the fatal deployment.
South Africa recently announced it was contributing soldiers to a new UN military force in the Democratic Republic of Congo to fight the M23 rebel movement, which is accused of committing grave human rights abuses.
M23 formed in 2012 and largely comprising of ethnic Tutsis released an open letter to the South Africa parliament urging it to pull out of the Congo, saying it was an “absurd war.”
The rebel group said it represented an oppressed people and would defend its cause.
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