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The Lesotho Intervention

(1998)

 

The Lesotho Intervention

(1998)

 

 

BELLIGERENTS:

Lesotho Government of Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, South Africa and Botswana

v.

Rebel Lesotho Army troops

***Many "loyal" Lesotho soldiers (as well as rebel troops) engaged in combat with the intervening foreign forces thinking their country was being invaded.***

 
DATES OF CONFLICT:
BEGAN: September 22, 1998

ENDED: Continuing

TYPE(S) OF CONFLICT:

Army Rebellion and Foreign Intervention

 

RELATED CONFLICTS:

PREDECESSOR:

CONCURRENT:

SUCCESSOR:

 

 

CAUSES OF CONFLICT:
After the May, 1998 election, the ruling Lesotho Congress for Democracy won 79 out of 80 seats. Many people in Lesotho saw this large margin of victory as evidence of a corrupted electoral system and began a series of demonstrations, including barring Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili his cabinet ministers and officials from their offices. Protesters locked the gates of Parliament and forced the Bank of Lesotho to close. Adding to the mounting chaos, an army mutiny broke out in early September, 1998 when junior officers rebelled and seized senior officers as hostages. As a result, Lesotho Defense Force commander, Lt-General Makhula Mosakeng dismissed 26 senior Army officers and then himself resigned. Due to the uncertain military situation and confusion, the Army refrained from serious efforts to restore order as civilian demonstrations continued.

 

The Southern African Development Community (SADC), which includes South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe, sponsored peace talks between the ruling LCD party and the three opposition parties which felt cheated in the election. Citing "security concerns", the Prime Minister's party chose not to attend the talks. The failure of the talks increased the fears of continued unrest and possible civil war.

 
 
DESCRIPTION OF CONFLICT:

 
CHRONOLOGY OF CONFLICT:

SEPT.11, 1998--Army revolt by junior officers.

 

CONSEQUENCES OF CONFLICT:

 

CASUALTY FIGURES:

 
 

UNIQUE FACTS OR TRENDS:

1.

2.

 

SOURCES:

 

1. "Lesotho and its big brother" Sept. 22, 1998--BBC Online Network

2. "Lesotho Coup 'in the offing'" Sept. 16, 1998--BBC Online Network

3. "South Africa gives up Lesotho mediation" Sept. 21, 1998--BBC Online Network

4."Deadlock in Lesotho as ruling party refuses to attend talks" by Candi Ratabane Ramainoane, September 21, 1998--Africa News Online

LINKS
 

CIA Factbook on Country or conflict Click on the country name at this site.

 

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