US ventures into bloody Africa conflict

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The United States is venturing into one of Africa's bloodiest conflicts, sending about 100 U.S. troops to central Africa to support a years-long fight against a guerrilla group accused of horrific atrocities.

The Obama administration says the troops are being sent to advise, not engage in combat, unless forced to defend themselves.

In a letter to Congress, President Barack Obama said Friday that the troops will assist local forces in a long-running battle against the Lord's Resistance Army. The army is considered one of Africa's most ruthless rebel groups.

The first of the troops arrived in Uganda on Wednesday and others will be sent to South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.