The bodies of Ugandan soldiers who were killed in Somalia during an attack by the Al-Shabaab militants on Easter Sunday have arrived in Uganda.
Four caskets containing four bodies of UPDF officers were flown into the country on Tuesday afternoon and received at the Entebbe airport army base. The dead soldiers were peacekeepers serving under the Africa Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
The attack which targeted the AMISOM Forward Operating Bases at Quoroyole, Buoolomere and Golwen in Lower Shabelle Region of Somalia also saw over 30 Al-Shabaab militants killed and several of their weapons seized.
The ceremony to receive the bodies was attended by the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) Spokesperson, Brig Richard Karemire, the Deputy Commander of the Land Forces, Maj Gen Sam Kavuma, army officers, journalists as well as relatives of the deceased soldiers.
However, the army was hesitant to reveal details including the names of the four bodies that arrived on Tuesday. Journalists who witnessed the arrival of the bodies said the authorities stopped them from interviewing the relatives of the deceased.
Similarly, the exact number of UPDF soldiers who died in the attack remains uncertain, which has led many to speculate over what the motive behind the secrecy could be.
While the army spokesperson maintains that Uganda lost only 4 soldiers, President Yoweri Museveni put the figure at 8 in a statement posted earlier on Tuesday.
Museveni said that the eight Ugandan soldiers who were in one of the camps were killed by a detonated vehicle belonging to Al-Shabaab which rammed into the camp.
Brig Karemire told journalists at the army base that more bodies were expected to be flown in, but he could neither reveal how many nor when they were arriving.
Photos by Denis Woniala and Sheila T. Mugisha
Questions Linger as 4 Bodies of UPDF Soldiers Killed in Somalia Arrive was first posted on April 3, 2018 at 4:24 pm.
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