Pictorial: UPDF Withdraws From Central African Republic

8275 Views Gulu, Uganda


Troops of Uganda People's Defense Forces making up the 39 battalion today started withdrawing from the Central African Republic ending a combat-equipped deployment  in search for Joseph Kony, the leader of the Lords Resistance Army.

The UPDF has been in CAR since December 2009 as part of Operation Lightening Thunder, launched after reports that the LRA was causing instability in Obo, a forested town in CAR and later as  part of the African Union Regional Task Force launched in 2012.

They were under instruction to arrest or kill the self-styled mystic and prophet, who launched a bloody rebellion three decades ago in northern Uganda. The United Nations  says the LRA has slaughtered more than 100,000 people and abducted 60,000 children since it was set up in 1987.

UPDF Spokesman Brigadier Richard Karemire says that although Kony was not captured, the decision to withdraw was premised on the realization that the mission to neutralize the LRA has now been successfully achieved and LRA's capacity of waging war against Uganda has been degraded.  

The troops began arriving in 4th Division barracks in Gulu on Wednesday morning. URN brings you pictures of their arrival.

Peter Labeja captured some of the moments.


To license these photos, contact Douglas Mutumba, Client Relations Officer. Email: dmutumba@yahoo.co.uk; Office: +256 414 530777; Cell: +256 758 745021.


About the author

Peter Labeja
Peter Labeja has been a practicing journalist for the last 13 years during which he has covered part of the brutal conflict which bedeviled Northern Uganda as well as the painful transition to Peace thereafter. Emerging post conflict issues such as land rights of under privileged widows and orphans, challenges of access to social services in the immediate aftermath of Lord’s Resistance Army conflict in Northern Uganda.

Labeja is now the Northern Uganda Bureau chief in Acholi Sub Region since 2014 - Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya and Omoro districts as well as South Sudan falls within his areas of jurisdiction. He previously worked with The Vision Group for four years.

Labeja’s major career interests are in Climate Change; Agriculture and Environment - natural resources such as Water, Oil and Gas; Transitional Justice; Human Rights, Democracy and Governance as well as South Sudan’s humanitarian crisis. In 2013, Labeja was awarded a prestigious Pan African Journalism Award for excellence in journalism at United Nation’s UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya for Climate Change and Health Reporting.