Rebel-hit Angolan Railroad To Reopen in Two Years
Apr. 17, 1987
LISBON, Portugal (AP) _ Black-ruled southern African countries plan to rebuild a rebel-destroyed railroad in Angola, the Angolan news agency ANGOP reported Friday.
The nations hope to make the repairs within two years to lessen the need of trading through South Africa.
President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia said the reopening of the 1,250-mile Benguela railroad that links landlocked Zaire to Angola's Atlantic Ocean port of Lobito would cost $280 million, the agency reported.
Kaunda made the statement in the Angolan capital of Luanda after a summit meeting of the presidents of Zambia, Zaire, Mozambique and Angola, the agency said.
The Societe Generale de Belgique, which holds an 84 percent share in the railroad, will help obtain financing through the European Economic Community and the World Bank, Fernando Goncalves, news editor of the Mozambique national news agency AIM reported from Luanda.
Sabotage attacks by the rebel movement UNITA have rendered the line inoperational for most of the past 12 years.
Black-ruled southern African countries accuse Pretoria of supporting Angolan and Mozambican rebels in part to cut off alternative transport routes and force the countries to trade through South Africa.