Magazine article UN Chronicle

Reports on Namibia: Military, Economic, Political

Magazine article UN Chronicle

Reports on Namibia: Military, Economic, Political

Article excerpt

Reports on Namibia: military, economic, political

South Africa, over the last year, has continued to strengthen its military presence in Namibia by sharply augmenting the ranks of its occupation forces inside the Territory by recruiting large numbers of mercenaries and forcibly conscripting Namibians into its military machinery.

So states a working paper dated 7 May 1985, prepared by the Secretariat, on the subject of military activities in Namibia (A/AC.109/825) for the Special Committee on decolonization.

South Africa, the document states, has expanded and fortified its military bases in Namibia, especially along the border with Angola. A variety of military, paramilitary and police units have been deployed in Namibia to strengthen South Africa's illegal occupation and the apartheid system. The size and composition of the South African force in Namibia is generally estimated at 100,000.

The actual number of troops was reported to increase considerably when preparations were being made for military attacks on neighbouring States. South Africa's military spending for 1984 was to be increased by 21.4 per cent, an increase that would be the equivalent of $3 billion of a $20.7 billion budget.

While the vast majority of States have complied with the mandatory arms embargo against South Africa, some countries have continued to provide military support to Pretoria, the document goes on. Reports indicate that the development of South Africa's nuclear capability has been enhanced and accelerated by the collaboration of certain Western States.

South Africa, the paper states, has reportedly been engaged in a systematic campaign of destabilizing neighbouring States in an attempt to force them to cease support for the liberation struggle in southern Africa. By using Namibia as a launching pad, Pretoria has repeatedly committed acts of aggression against Angola.

South Africa has also reportedly been recruiting, training, financing and equipping mercenaries to cause instability and supplying "puppet groups" with military hardware and funds to attack the legitimate Governments of front-line States. …

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