In recent years, the terrorist threat in Africa has become an increasing concern for the countries in the region and the international community at large. Attacks by terrorist groups like Boko Haram based in Nigeria, and Al Shabaab based in Somalia, have been relentless not only in the respective countries, but also in the region. These groups have often targeted citizens and assets, with global implications. In this issue, we present analyses of the threat posed by regional groups like Boko Haram and Al Shabaab and government responses at the national and regional level.
Eric Watkins highlights how the Lamu Port – South Sudan – Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) corridor project has been derailed, owing to security risks posed by the threat of Al Shabaab in the region. This could adversely affect the economic development in East Africa, thereby requiring a more concerted response by the concerned governments in the region.
Seun Bamidele presents an analysis of the terrorist threat to Mali and Nigeria and the response to these threats by the respective countries. To address the threat of terrorism, he recommends that governments in these countries must address the underlying causes of terrorism, which are deeply rooted in socio-economic grievances.
Jennifer Ogbogu discusses the threat of Boko Haram in Nigeria and the regional security implications of Boko Haram’s alliance with ISIS. She argues that this poses a grave security threat to Nigeria and to the West African region. This has highlighted the need for a more comprehensive counter-terrorism response.
In a similar vein, Mohammed L. dan Suleiman argues that Boko Haram’s pledge of allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) is an attempt to sustain its momentum in the region in the face of military campaigns against the group. According to him, short-term kinetic operations should be supplemented by both socio-economic and counter-ideology initiatives in order to deal with the threat in the long-term.
Africa / Commentaries / Conflict and Stability / Terrorism Studies
Last updated on 21/09/2015