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South Africa increasing Mozambique deployment

South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa (left) meets Mozambique's President Filipe Nyusi in Mueda in Cabo Delgado Province on 3 February. (South African Presidency)

South Africa has begun to deploy a combat group to Cabo Delgado Province in northern Mozambique as part of the regional military mission, a senior South African National Defence Force source has confirmed to Janes.

The combat group that is being contributed to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) will comprise the motorised 2 South African Infantry Battalion reinforced with a company and pathfinder teams from 1 Parachute Battalion and tactical intelligence teams.

At the same time, a Special Forces Group from 4 Special Forces Regiment will relieve the one from 5 Special Forces Regiment that has been deployed since July 2021.

The navy may deploy one of its frigates for interdiction patrols off the coast of Cabo Delgado together with elements of the Maritime Reaction Squadron, which is trained for boarding and minor beach operations. It is unclear if this will carry a Super Lynx helicopter, none of which are currently operational.

Contrary to the SAMIM concept, the navy will not be deploying a second frigate or a submarine, and the South African Air Force (SAAF) will apparently not be deploying a C-47TP maritime.

Some other SADC countries are also believed to be intending to step up their deployments in Cabo Delgado.

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