Soldiers of the specially formed 33rd Irish Battalion serving with the United Nations forces in the Congo, were recently sent to Albertville, Katanga Province, to offer protection to the non-combatant civilian population, and exercise a restraining influence on opposing Tshombe-Lumumba troops.
GV Area surrounding Albertville
SIDE V..Irish officers look at country side, Commandant Hogan and Col Bunworth
SV DITTO, Lt. R. Commandants Quigley, T. McCreach and Sgt. M. Windsor
CU Irish soldier with Bren gun
SV Three Commandants, L to R, McMahon, Wheeler,J. MacCarthy
SV Changing U.N. guards outside cotton factory
SV Irish Lieutenant Gerry Enright
SV U.N. flag outside Irish Headquarters
SV Three soldiers
SV Irish piper in Albertville main square
SV Two Irish Military police
SV Pipers go to cafe for refreshment
SV Cafe owner with snake
SV Commandant McCarthy talks with seated troops
CU Commandant McCarthy
SV Troops drinking
Initials PC/TDH/V/ES PC/TDH/V/MR/ES
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Background: Soldiers of the specially formed 33rd Irish Battalion serving with the United Nations forces in the Congo, were recently sent to Albertville, Katanga Province, to offer protection to the non-combatant civilian population, and exercise a restraining influence on opposing Tshombe-Lumumba troops.
Doing their best to boost the morale among the invasion-scared population, their cheerful pipe-band, with swirling kilts and blue United Nations caps, were rather like modern Pied Pipers of Hamelin as they played up and down the streets of Albertville with crowds of laughing, dancing children in their wake.
Re-enforcements were rushed to a company of Irish troops in Manono, a large tin-producing town just south of Albertville, after Africans supporting Lumumba clashed with Katanga police Sept 13. Baluba tribesmen armed with muzzle-loading guns, bows and arrows, spears, and bicycle chains came in from outlying districts to re-inforce the rioters. Soon the whole town was ablaze as rioters overwhelmed police opposition.
Europeans and Africans alike continue to be evacuated by air from Manono. Sept 15 a Baluba member of Parliament arrived to try to pacify the rioters, who still roam the streets.