AFRICA RECORDED A TOTAL OF 78 TERRORIST ATTACKS RESULTING IN A TOTAL OF 250 DEATHS

Map 1-15 Sep 2019-s

General Situation.

The reporting period, 1st to 15th September 2019 recorded a slight decrease in the number of attacks compared to the period 16th to 31st August 2019. However, casualties inflicted by terrorist and violent extremist groups across Africa remained almost the same.

Terrorist Attacks.

A total of 78 terrorist attacks were recorded across Africa compared to 86 attacks during the preceding period.

Countries Most Affected.

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

Target of Terrorist Attacks.

While 39 out of the 78 terrorist attacks were launched against civilians, 33 were targeted at Security Forces. Four attacks targeted International Peace Mission (AMISOM, MINUSMA and MONUSCO) and two others targeted Government Institutions/Officials. The attacks by Boko Haram (SF), ISWAP, other IS affiliates and JNIM were mainly against Security Forces whilst, ISGS mostly targeted civilians. Al-Shabaab targeted civilians and Security Forces at the same rate. The majority of attacks conducted by Unknown/Unaffiliated groups targeted more civilians.

Weapons Used.

The terrorist groups used Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) in 55 out of the 78 attacks. Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were used in nine of the attacks and both IEDs and SALW were used in five attacks. Other nine attacks were cases of kidnapping.

Terrorism Deaths/Casualties.

A total number of 250 deaths were recorded during the period. The actual casualty figures for the period were 109 civilians, 109 Military/Security personnel and 32 terrorists.

Casualties Inflicted by Terrorist Groups.

Al-Shabaab killed 44 persons (25 civilians, 19 security); ISWAP killed 36 persons (3 civilians, 33 Security); JNIM killed 25 persons (15 civilians, 10 security); Boko Haram (Shekau Faction) killed 16 persons ( 2 civilians, 14 security); ISGS killed 3 civilians; Other IS affiliates in Sinai killed three security forces and Unknown/Other groups killed 91 persons (61 civilians, 30 Security).

Casualties Sustained by Terrorist Groups.

Al-Shabaab suffered the highest casualties during the period. Security forces killed 23 al-Shabaab militants. AQIM, Boko Haram (SF) and other IS affiliates each lost 3 militants, and 27 militants from Unknown /Other groups were also killed.

Kidnapping.

Nine cases of kidnapping were recorded and a total of 52 persons were taken hostage in Cameroon, DRC, Mali, Mozambique, Niger and Nigeria. Five out of the 52 persons kidnapped were killed, 10 were released and 37 remained in hostage.

Focus on Epicentres.

Out of the total of 78 terrorist attacks, Sahel region accounted for 33, Horn of Africa recorded 17, and the Lake Chad Basin recorded 16. The Sahel region recorded 100 deaths from terrorist attacks, the Horn of Africa recorded 65 deaths and the Lake Chad Basin recorded 55 deaths during the period under review.

High Profile Incidents.

On 03 September, in Mopti, Mali, A civilian bus hit an IED. 15 passengers were killed and about 30 others injured. JNIM claimed responsibility for the attack. On 14 September in Hirshabelle, Somalia, Al-Shabaab militants ambushed Burundian troops serving with the AMISOM, killing 12 soldiers and injuring six others.

Counter-Terrorism Response.

Deliberate CT operations resulted in neutralizing of 27 militants of terrorist groups. One Security force was also killed.

Conclusions/Recommendations.

Violent extremist activities in the Northeastern state of Borno in Nigeria remained a challenging situation. Borno became the epicenter of complex and sophisticated attacks within the period. ISWAP displayed massive cohesion, capability and the will to thwart the efforts of the security forces in stabilizing the state and the wider Lake Chad Basin area. Majority of the attacks in Borno targeted Military and Security forces. Nigeria recorded 52 deaths from 13 attacks. 69% of all deaths that occurred in Nigeria were against security forces. Effective response to the prevailing situation would require the adoption and ground implementation of a well thought through stakeholders-based approach to deny ISWAP the foot hold that it currently has in the region. To stabilize Borno in particular and prevent further radicalization of the populace, it is crucial to create the conditions for economic development that generates jobs, especially given the growing number of young people in the region. In addition to development projects, conducting humanitarian and stabilization activities to respond swiftly to the urgent needs of populations, to facilitate the return of the State and basic services and to promote social cohesion and reconciliation are urgently needed.

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