COAL TRAINS ON MOZAMBIQUE’S SENA LINE RUNNING AGAIN

Trains operated by the Brazilian mining company Vale are once again carrying coal along the Sena railway line from the Vale mine at Moatize in the western Mozambican province of Tete to the port of Beira on the Indian Ocean coast.

Vale’s use of the railway line was interrupted after two attacks on coal trains by gunmen of the rebel movement Renamo. The last such attack was in late July.

According to a report in Wednesday’s issue of the Maputo daily, Noticias, the first train to make the journey arrived at the Beira coal terminal on Wednesday morning. The train consisted of four locomotives and 84 wagons loaded with coal.

Re-opening the Sena line to Vale’s coal trains was conditional on a deal between Vale and the Mozambican port and rail company CFM, with CFM taking responsibility for the costs of security.

Earlier this year, work on modernizing the Sena line was concluded so that it can now handle 20 million tonnes of cargo a year, rather than the previous 6.5 million. The improvements made to the line should reduce the number of derailments. The work was carried out by the Portuguese company, Mota-Engil, and cost 163 million US dollars.

The line can now be safely used by trains of up to 100 wagons, pulled by six locomotives.

Meanwhile, the Renamo attacks are having a severe impact on the northern parts of Tete province. Operating out of a military base in the Monjo area, Renamo gangs have attacked Banga and Maconje localities, in Tsangano district, according to a report in the Beira newspaper, Diario de Mozambique. In both places, the gunmen attacked health units and stole medicines.

The poor security situation has caused 769 people to flee from their homes and take refuge in the villages of Nkhangazobwe and A�gua-boa.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK.