SANDF launches probe after soldiers exchange deadly fire with Mozambican border police

South African National Defence Force exchanged fire with police officers from Mozambique.
South African National Defence Force exchanged fire with police officers from Mozambique.
Image: Getty Images

South African and Mozambique have launched investigations following a fatal shootout between local soldiers with Mozambican border police on the border between the two countries.

The incident left two members of Mozambique’s border police dead, resulting in the two countries launching a joint investigation into what happened, a Mozambique police officer said on Monday.

South Africa’s National Defence Force (SANDF) confirmed that there had been shooting incident involving its soldiers and Mozambique border police on Sunday afternoon in the northern part of Kwazulu-Natal province.

It said no SANDF members had been killed but gave no further information about the incident.

The SANDF’s Brig Gen Mafi Mgobozi confirmed in a statement on Monday that shots were fired in the area of Ndumo, east of Farazella, along the SA-Mozambique border at around 4pm on Sunday. 

He described the contact as a "shooting incident".

"Our soldiers were conducting routine patrol as part of borderline protection when this incident occurred," Mgobozi said.

"Details around this incident are still sketchy and reasons for the shooting are not yet known. A board of inquiry will be convened to determine [the] cause of the incident." 

He said the force had sent a team to the border area to get more information.

He added that he was not aware of any similar incidents taking place in the area in the past.

Mozambique police spokesman Juarse Martins told a local television channel: "Both the deceased are Mozambican police members. Our police force and its South African counterpart are holding a joint meeting to establish the real causes that led to that incident."

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