In the Siege of Jadotville[ʒa.do.vil] in September 1961, a small contingent of the Irish Army's 35th Battalion, designated "A" Company, serving as part of the United Nations Operation in the Congo (Opération des Nations Unies au Congo, ONUC) were besieged in the mining town of Jadotville (modern-day Likasi) by Katangese forces loyal to the secessionist State of Katanga. The siege took place during the seven-day escalation of a stand-off between ONUC and Katangese forces during Operation Morthor. Although the contingent of 155 Irish soldiers repelled attacks by a 3,000-man Katangese force for five days while an undersized relief force of Irish, Indian and Swedish troops attempted to reach them, they were eventually forced to surrender having run out of ammunition and water. "A" Company was subsequently held as prisoners of war for approximately one month. Despite inflicting approximately 1,300 casualties (including up to 300 killed) on the attacking force, with no deaths amongst "A" Company, and surrendering only after running out of ammunition, it would be more than half a century before Ireland acknowledged the bravery and achievements of the vastly outnumbered Irish soldiers at the Siege of Jadotville.
Irish UN peacekeeping troops defend against attack by Kanganese soldiers