United States Concerned Over the Killing of Lesotho’s Former Army Commander

Press Statement
John Kirby, Department Spokesperson
Washington, DC

The United States is deeply concerned about the fatal shooting on June 25 of former Lesotho Defense Force Commander Maaparankoe Mahao and conveys our heartfelt condolences to his family. We urge the Government of Lesotho to ensure a thorough and transparent investigation of Brigadier Mahao’s death and to hold accountable those responsible.

This latest–and most tragic–example of abuses within the Lesotho Defense Force highlights the urgent need for security sector reform, a goal identified as a top priority by the Government of Lesotho in its coalition agreement. We welcome that commitment and encourage the government to move forward quickly and robustly in transforming the defense force into an institution that enjoys the confidence of all Basotho.