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Police officer decapitated in new round of Macomia attacks

The Islamic State group claimed three attacks on FDS positions in Macomia on Wednesday

A Mozambican police trainee has been killed in one of three attacks on Mozambican defence and security forces positions in Macomia on Wednesday, claimed by the Islamic State Central African Province (ISCAP).

On Wednesday, ISCAP social media channels boasted of attacking two barracks in Macomia, one in the village of Chai and the other in Quinto Congresso, 10 km away. A source in a nearby district who is also a member of the police force told Zitamar that South African and Mozambican forces had been fighting insurgents around Quinto Congresso since Tuesday. A source in Macomia told Zitamar that insurgents attacked Quinto Congresso in the morning, between 9:00 and 11:00 local time.

A document issued by the Cabo Delgado Provincial Command of the Police, seen by Zitamar, confirmed at least one casualty at Quinto Congresso: a trainee in the Rapid Intervention Unit (Unidade de Intervencao Rapida, UIR) from the Niassa provincial command, assigned to the 6th Independent Company. The document states that he was decapitated at approximately 01:30 on Wednesday, and that his remains have been transferred to the morgue at the provincial hospital in Pemba. Zitamar is not naming the dead man since it is unclear if his family have been informed.

A video obtained by Zitamar allegedly of the aftermath of the attack at Quinto Congresso shows a beheaded, disembowelled body, whose limbs have been severed and scattered across the ground. The video also shows several huts that have been burned out and destroyed.

A further claim was issued by ISCAP on the night of Wednesday to Thursday morning, this time claiming to have attacked a Mozambican army barracks in the village of Litamanda, close to Chai in northern Macomia. All three attacks caused fatalities, according to the ISCAP claims.

A military source alleged that the latest attacks in Macomia were committed by a new group of insurgents from Congo who have recently installed themselves in the district.

The three latest villages to be attacked lie just to the north of the villages of Nova Zambezia and Nkoe, which were attacked by insurgents on 15 and 17 January respectively.

This article was produced by Zitamar and Mediafax under the Cabo Ligado project, in collaboration with ACLED. The contents of the article are the sole responsibility of Zitamar News.