Another One Bites The Dust
IRIN 'reports' below.
Didn't mention the need for a legitimate UN security force.
Or that almost every one so far has met w/ disaster.
LESOTHO: SADC withdrawal sparks concern
JOHANNESBURG, 18 May (IRIN) -
The weekend withdrawal of South African and Botswana peacekeeping troops from Lesotho risks leaving a security vacuum in the politically volatile mountain kingdom, analysts warn.
"There is still some concern on the part of the government," a diplomatic source in the capital Maseru told IRIN. "Frankly, it is still a dicey situation."
South Africa and Botswana, under the aegis of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), intervened in September last year following increasingly violent opposition protest over alleged government rigging of the May election, and an army mutiny which threatened to degenerate into a coup. The deployment was resisted by elements within the Lesotho army and the capital Maseru was trashed in days of looting before peace could be restored by the 800-strong intervention force.
"The government would be nervous about the [SADC] withdrawal in terms of having the muscle to discourage political instability," Sagran Naidoo of the South African Institute of International Relations told IRIN.
A small contingent of SADC troops has remained in Lesotho to retrain the army, historically a politicised institution, and a rapid reaction force of South African and Botswana troops is reportedly on standby should instability re-emerge in the run up to next years election. However, according to security sources, the operational details of the standby units "have not been worked out at all".
The SADC intervention divided public opinion in Lesotho between those who considered it an outright invasion and government supporters. In the multiparty Interim Political Authority, set up to oversee the poll, and the government, "negotiations continue about the role of the military and all aspects of security," the diplomat said. "Progress on reducing tensions has reached the point where SADC forces could withdraw, but it is not totally resolved."