Central Mine Action Training School (CMATS) Angola

25 October 1995 - 20 April 1999
Military personnel

Angola had been a Portuguese colonial possession since the end of the 15th century. Following decolonisation, the country’s former liberation movements, the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), were unable to form a transitional government.

Agreement regarding withdrawal

In the 10 years that followed, the MPLA government, which was militarily supported by Cuba, was recognised by many countries. With South African help, however, UNITA continued to resist in the south of the country. In 1988, Angola, South Africa and Cuba signed the Brazzaville Protocol, which provided for the withdrawal of South African and Cuban troops from Angola. The United Nations Angola Verification Mission I (UNAVEM-I) monitored the withdrawal of the Cubans. The civil war continued, however.

Demobilisation of fighters

Negotiations between the MPLA government and UNITA resulted in the signing of the Bicesse Accords on 31 May 1991. Among other things, it was agreed that a substantial number of active MPLA and UNITA fighters were to be accommodated in cities and demobilized. The remaining fighters were to form the foundation of a national Angolan army. The United Nations would only act as verifier of the joint commissions (UNAVEM‑II).