AFRICA RECORDED A TOTAL OF 86 TERRORIST ATTACKS RESULTING IN A TOTAL OF 249 DEATHS

Map 16-31 Aug 2019-s

General Situation

The reporting period, 16th to 31st August 2019 recorded a slight increase in the number of attacks and casualties caused by terrorist and violent extremist groups across Africa compared to the period 1st to 15th August, 2019.

Terrorist Attacks.

A total of 86 terrorist attacks were recorded across Africa during the period compared to 76 attacks during the preceding period.

Countries Most Affected.

The five countries most affected by terrorism during the period are Nigeria, Somalia, Burkina Faso, DRC and Mali, (In decreasing order of deaths recorded).

Target of Terrorist Attacks.

While 48 out of the 86 terrorist attacks were launched against civilians, 33 were targeted at Security Forces. Four attacks targeted International Peace Mission (MINUSMA) and another one targeted Government Institutions/Officials. The attacks by al-Shabaab, ISWAP, ISGS and JNIM were mainly against Security Forces whilst, Boko Haram (SF) and ADF mostly targeted civilians.
The majority of attacks conducted by Unidentified/Unaffiliated groups targeted more civilians.

Weapons Used.

The terrorist groups used Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) in 62 out of the 86 attacks. Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were used in 15 of the attacks and both IEDs and SALW were used in one attack. Other eight attacks were cases of kidnapping.

Terrorism Deaths/Casualties.

A total number of 249 deaths resulting from the 86 terrorist attacks were recorded during the period. The actual casualty figures for the period were 96 civilians, 62 Military/Security personnel and 91 terrorists.

Casualties Inflicted by Terrorist Groups.

JNIM killed 35 persons (2 civilians, 33 security); ISWAP killed 28 persons (11 civilians, 17 Security); Boko Haram (Shekau Faction) killed 27 persons (all civilians); AlShabaab killed 11 persons (4 civilians, 7 security); ADF killed 3 persons ( 2 civilians, 1 security); and Unknown/Other groups killed 54 persons (50 civilians, 4 Security). Casualties Sustained by Terrorist Groups. JNIM suffered the highest casualties during the period. Security forces killed 41 JNIM militants. Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram (SF) each lost 33 militants, while 39 militants from Unknown /Other groups were also killed.

Kidnapping.

Eight cases of kidnapping were recorded and a total of 246 persons were taken hostage in Cameroon, Chad, DRC, Mali, Niger and Nigeria. One captive was killed, 12 were released and 233 others remained in hostage.

Focus on Epicentres.

Out of the total of 86 terrorist attacks, Sahel region accounted for 31, Lake Chad Basin recorded 21, and Horn of Africa recorded 11. The Lake Chad Basin recorded 91 deaths from terrorist attacks, the Sahel region recorded 57 deaths and the Horn of Africa recorded 39 deaths during the period under review.

High Profile Incidents.

On 19 August in Koutougou, Burkina Faso, JNIM militants attacked a military base, killing 24 soldiers and injuring seven others. On 18 August in Barire, Somalia, al-Shabaab militants attacked a military base. Soldiers repelled the attack, killing 20 al-Shabaab militants

Counter-Terrorism Response.

Deliberate CT operations resulted in the neutralization of 55 militants of terrorist groups.

Conclusions/Recommendations.

Local Jihadi groups with affiliation to either al-Qaida or Islamic State (IS) continued their attacks. The civilian population continue to bear the brunt of terrorist activities in the operational zones of terrorist and violent extremist groups. The continued civilian casualties are fast eroding the confidence of citizens in the ability of governments to protect them and ensure their safety from attacks by armed groups. Inclusive measures that seek to protect local communities and ensure their resilience could be an enduring solution to rebuilding the confidence and trust between the citizenry and Government. The 19 August JNIM attack on a military base in Koutougou, Burkina Faso in which 24 soldiers were killed is regarded as one of the worst attacks since the insurgency begun in 2016. The situation in Burkina Faso for the period remained a challenging one. Terrorist groups are expanding their activities, exacerbating inter-communal tensions and exploiting the collective grievances of the local populations. The absence of state institutions to deliver basic services and the porosity of borders are considered causal factors of escalated terrorist activities for the period. Burkina Faso urgently requires the mobilization of all segments of the society through a campaign aimed at winning hearts and minds of the populace through good governance and the rule of law.

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