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|Thursday, March 22, 2001, updated at 17:04(GMT+8)|
Total Troop Withdrawal Now From Congo Impossible: Ugandan FMThe full withdrawal of Ugandan troops from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) would not be possible until there is unity and stability in the country, Ugandan Foreign Minister Eriya Kategaya has said.
"We would not have any reason to maintain troops in the DRC if the country was stable and under control," Kategaya was quoted as saying by Thursday's New Vision daily.
He said that the situation in the DRC is not just one of internal politics of relevance only to Kinshasa, as it has broader consequences for neighboring countries.
A troop pullback from the front-line positions by all belligerents in the complex war in the DRC began last Thursday under an accord reached last December, said the report.
The 15-kilometer retreat from about 100 front-line positions by forces is the first phase of a complete withdrawal.
Kategaya said seven battalions or some 4,000 soldiers, which constitute more than half of the forces Uganda have in the DRC, have been redeployed from the front lines.
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