UN-backed disarmament concludes in rebel stronghold in northern Sierra Leone

30 October 2001

More than 100 fighters from the rebel Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in Sierra Leone have handed over their weapons to United Nations peacekeepers in the northern part of the country, the UN Mission there (UNAMSIL) said today in statement.

The UNAMSIL Force Commander, Lt. Gen. Daniel Opande, witnessed the disarmament of RUF combatants yesterday at a gathering in Kamakwie, the last chiefdom to disarm in Bombali District. The weapons included hand grenades, mortar bombs, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft, AK-47s, machine-guns and multi-barrel grenade launchers.

Speaking to the people of Kamakwie, Lt. Gen. Opande urged them to support the disarmament of RUF combatants in the area. He also reminded them that he had fulfilled his promise to deploy UNAMSIL peacekeepers so they could provide security during and after the demobilization exercise.

In his address, Kamakwie's Paramount Chief expressed concerns over the poor condition of the roads and bridges linking the area to Makeni and other districts.

The Force Commander later presented consignments of rice, drugs and other non-food items to the people of Kamakwie on behalf of UN peacekeepers.


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