LRA leader Joseph Kony at a meeting with Ugandan officials, lawmakers and representatives from NGOs in 2006 in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
President Obama announced Friday that he has ordered a “small number” of combat-ready U.S. soldiers—somewhere around 100, the BBC says—to help local forces in Uganda fight the Lord’s Resistance Army and its internationally wanted leader, Joseph Kony.
But lest anyone in the global community kick up a fuss about the U.S. as world policeman, Obama also pointed out in a release he composed for the occasion that the American troops joining the battle against the LRA will make good on their combat training only to defend themselves. —KA
Mr Obama did not provide any details about the deployment duration, but a US military spokesman later told the BBC that the “forces are prepared to stay as long as necessary to enable regional security forces to carry on independently”.
The force will use hi-tech equipment to assist in what analysts say is a “kill or capture” policy, the BBC’s Marcus George in Washington reports.
The deployment follows recent US legislation to help disarm the LRA and bring its leader to justice. The theory is, our correspondent adds, that without Joseph Kony, the movement will collapse from within.
At least 30,000 people died as the LRA spread terror in northern Uganda for more than 20 years, displacing some two million people.