Speeches, etc.

Margaret Thatcher

Speech at the Nyanga Border Camp

Document type: Speeches, interviews, etc.
Venue: Nyanga, Zimbabwe-Mozambique border
Source: Thatcher Archive: COI transcript
Editorial comments: Around 1500 local time.
Importance ranking: Minor
Word count: 366
Themes: Defence (general), Foreign policy (Africa), Terrorism

President Mugabe, President Chissano, Gentlemen:

This is a unique occasion: first, three Heads of Government and second, and perhaps even more important, assembled here with three armies combined with one objective in mind—to defeat terrorism in Mozambique.

We are very grateful indeed to President Mugabe for letting us have this land and making it available for the training; grateful to him too for all the help the Zimbabwean army provides to Mozambique to help to defeat Renamo.

I obviously am particularly proud of the British soldiers of BEMAT here, who always acquit themselves so splendidly wherever they may go and I may say that they are in demand in some thirty countries in the world. They carry out their job with the greatest sense of professionalism and the highest spirit and concern for those whom they are training, and we are very proud to do it and have been considering ways today in which we can increase our effort. [end p1]

And third, to those who are here training for Mozambique and who also are helping with some of the training.

No country can develop peacefully and constructively while it is riven with terrorism and in this case terrorism of a particularly brutal and cruel kind. We know what it is like to fight that kind of terrorism and we know that it must be defeated. We are therefore proud to be able to take part in this fourteen-week training course of young men from Mozambique who are going back to serve their country so that it too may one day develop in peace and develop its resources to the great benefit of the whole population—three countries coming together with that objective.

We have been so very impressed with what we have seen this afternoon, not only in the expert way and the firing power you have, but also in the spirit in which you go about your training and your duties.

May I therefore wish you all well in your endeavours and hope that you will achieve your objective so that Mozambique may develop as part of the great southern Africa and come to have a higher standard of living for her people and be very grateful for the work which her soldiers and those of Zimbabwe and of Great Britain have performed here at Nyanga.

Every good wish! (applause)