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The leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, Joseph Kony, answers journalists' questions following a meeting with U.N. humanitarian chief Jan Egeland at Ri-Kwamba in southern Sudan in 2006.

KAMPALA, Uganda - The African Union says Congo has sent 500 troops to join a Uganda-led military effort to hunt down Joseph Kony, the fugitive head of the Lord's Resistance Army rebel group.

The troops were handed over in a ceremony Wednesday, the African Union said in a statement received Friday, bringing to 3,350 the number of African soldiers deployed against the LRA.

Uganda, South Sudan and the Central African Republic have already contributed troops to an African Union military program conceived last year to eliminate the LRA from the vast jungles of central Africa. They are assisted by about 100 U.S. military advisers.

The LRA watchdog group Enough Project says the military mission against the LRA, a brutal group that recruits children, needs more boots on the ground.

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