U.N. Confirms Cuban Withdrawal From Southern Angola With AM-Namibia
LISBON, Portugal (AP) _ United Nations officials say all Cuban troops have withdrawn from southern Angola below the 13th parallel in accordance with an agreement signed in December, Angolan media reported Monday.
Brazilian Gen. Pericles Ferreira Gomes said Saturday he was satisfied with the withdrawal after inspecting former Cuban bases in Namibe, Huila and Cuando-Cubando provinces south of the parallel that runs along Angola’s central highlands, said a report from ANGOP, the official Angolan news agency.
Ferreira Gomes, who heads the U.N. monitoring mission, said last week that half the 50,000 Cuban troops helping the Angolan government in a 14-year civil war against U.S.-backed UNITA rebels had left Angola ahead of the deadline set by the December agreement signed by Cuba, Angola and South Africa.
All Cuban troops are due out by July 1, 1991, under the agreement that also calls for a halt to South African aid to UNITA and commits Pretoria to granting independence to Angola’s southern neighbor, Namibia.
The Cuban pullout began in January when the first 3,000 Cubans left Luanda.
UNITA, the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola, has been fighting to share power since a Marxist government took power in Luanda after Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975.