Al-Shabaab

Gulf of Aden Security Review – October 16, 2014

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Original caption:Iraqi Police discovered this ...
Original caption:Iraqi Police discovered this improvised explosive device Nov. 7 (2005) in eastern Baghdad and disarmed it before it could be detonated in a terrorist attack. Army photo. The IED comprises 4 large artillery shells plus an anti-tank mine, all connected together via detonating cord. This would cause the 5 devices to detonate simultaneously. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yemen: Ansar al Sharia militants target al Houthis in Ibb and al Bayda; AQAP militants attack military checkpoint in Hadramawt; tribes protest al Houthi control in Ibb

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab militants detonate fourth VBIED in Mogadishu in as many days; al Shabaab militants ambush AMISOM forces in Lower Shabelle and Banadir regions; unidentified assailants target Mandera governor’s convoy with IED in Kenya’s North Eastern Province

Yemen Security Brief

  • Ansar al Sharia temporarily seized control of Udain, Ibb on October 16, killing five policemen and setting fire to multiple government buildings before withdrawing from the city. The group later claimed the attack was an attempt to thwart al Houthi control over the city. Separately, al Houthi gunmen continued to clash with AQAP militants in Rada’a, al Bayda, west of Ibb, on October 16, resulting in the deaths of 12 people.[1] Read the rest of this entry »
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Somali Islamic scholars denounce al-Shabab in fatwa

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The government organised the religious conference to tackle extremism

Some 160 Somali religious scholars have issued a fatwa denouncing al-Shabab, saying the group had no place in Islam.

Correspondents say it is the first time Somali religious leaders have come up with a fatwa against the group, which controls many rural areas.

At a conference on the phenomenon of extremism in Mogadishu, the scholars said they condemned al-Shabab’s use of violence.

Al-Shabab, or “The Youth”, is fighting to create an Islamic state in Somalia.

Despite being pushed out of key cities in the past two years, it still remains in control of smaller towns and large swathes of the countryside.

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Gulf of Aden Security Review – June 12, 2012

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Jaar-sm

Jaar-sm (Photo credit: Julian Stallabrass)

Yemen: Yemen military recaptures Jaar and Zinjibar; interview with AQAP military spokesman features details on May 21 suicide attack, battle for Abyan; findings from May 21 suicide attack in Sana’a to be released next week

Horn of Africa: TFG, Kenyan troops clash with al Shabaab near Qoqani; al Shabaab recaptures Mahas from Ahlu Sunna and Ethiopian forces; al Shabaab arrests four people in Elbur; Somali peacemaker in Beledweyne assassinated; Kenya asks for financial assistance from U.S. ahead of assault on al Shabaab’s stronghold in Kismayo; newly trained TFG soldiers arrive to Beledweyne

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemen’s commander of the southern military zone General Salem Qatan reported that the former Ansar al Sharia strongholds of Zinjibar and Jaar in Abyan governorate have been “completely cleansed.” The Yemeni Defense Ministry said that the Yemeni military, backed by armed tribesmen, entered Zinjibar and Jaar where they clashed with Ansar al Sharia militants. At least 20 militants, four soldiers, and two civilians were killed in the attack. Twenty more Yemeni soldiers were also injured. The Defense Ministry added that between 200 and 300 Ansar al Sharia militants, including foreign fighters, fled from Jaar, Zinjibar, and Shaqra. Residents in Jaar reported that militants left behind flyers stating that Ansar al Sharia did not want to “cause any harm to Jaar and its inhabitants.” Additionally, the Yemeni Navy reportedly sunk 10 boats carrying Ansar al Sharia militants.[1]
  • In an interview with al Quds al Arabi released on June 12, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s (AQAP) military commander Qasim al Raymi provided details on Sana’a’s May 21 suicide attack. When asked why AQAP targeted Yemeni troops when it claims it is at war with the U.S., Raymi explained that the attack was in retaliation for the Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s campaign against militants in Abyan and demonstrates AQAP’s ability to “bring the attack to them.” He added that the battle for Abyan will continue for years.[2]
  • Yemeni Interior Minister Abdul Qadir Qahtan announced on June 11 that the findings from the investigation of the May 21 Sana’a suicide bombing will be released next week. The attack claimed by AQAP killed over 100 Yemeni soldiers.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Local residents reported that Transitional Federal Government (TFG) soldiers, backed by Kenyan troops, clashed with al Shabaab militants near Qoqani in Lower Jubba region. Reports on casualties and injuries have yet to surface.[4]
  • Al Shabaab militants recaptured the town of Mahas in Hiraan region on June 11, reported locals. TFG and Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a forces withdrew before al Shabaab fighters arrived. Ahlu Sunna official Saney Mohamud Farah stated that the town fell to the militants due to the increased pressure felt from the growing presence of al Shabaab militants on the outskirts of Mahas.[5]

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Somalis Say US Rewards Will Help End ‘Reign of Terror’ By Al Qaeda Offshoot

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The U.S. government is offering $33 million for information leading to the capture of seven of Somali al Qaeda affiliate al Shabaab‘s top leaders, including $7 million for founder Ahmed Abdi aw-Mohamed, also known as Abu Zubeir or Godane, and $5 million apiece for Mukhtar Robow (left) and Mohamed Khalaf. (Rewards for Justice)

By MOHAMED IBRAHIM

June 9, 2012

The Somali government and Somali observers say the new $33 million U.S. bounty on the heads of seven al Shabaab leaders may be just what is needed to help crush the al Qaeda affiliate, which is already reeling from military assaults on all sides and from the air.

“The announcement from the U.S. government . . . will certainly help the Somali government’s efforts to end al Qaeda’s reign of terror in Somalia,” said Somalia’s transitional government in a statement Thursday. “This is an important juncture in Somali history, where the possibility of full recovery from years of chaos is within reach.”

Through its Rewards for Justice program, the State Department this week offered $7 million for information leading to the capture of al-Shabaab founder and commander Ahmed Abdi Aw-Mohamed, AKA Godane or Mukhtar Abu Zubeir, $5 million apiece for four other Shabaab leaders and $3 million a head for two more. By comparison, the U.S. had offered only $1 million for Abu Yahya al-Libi, who was killed in a U.S. strike in Pakistan on Monday and was described by U.S. officials as a bin Laden confidante al Qaeda’s second-in-command.

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Officials Watch for Body Bombs on Planes Watch Video

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Boko Haram Leader Vows More Attacks On Christians | Jih@d

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2012/01/15/

by Florian Flade

Imam Abu Bakr Shekau – Boko Haram leader vows more attacks on Nigerian Christians

In 2009 international media for the first time reported about a ominous Islamist group operating in Nigeria – Boko Haram. The group whose name is translated from the Northern Nigerian Hausa language into “Western Eduction is forbidden” carried out a series of attacks, killing dozens of policemen in Christian-dominated regions of Nigeria´s north.

As a result Nigerian security forces took revenge on the Islamists of Boko Haram killing hundreds of the group´s members in and around the city of Maiduguri. Boko Harams leader and founder, Mohammed Yusuf, was captured by security forces. Yusuf had created the Islamist movement in 2002 starting with a network of mosques and Islamic schools to spread Salafi Islam in Nigeria.

Nigerian security forces claimed Mohammed Yusuf was killed during his arrest. Video footage which emerged several days after the raid on Boko Haram showed Mohammed Yusuf alive in custody being interrogated. He was shot dead by Nigerian soldiers and policemen, his body was also seen in videos released later.

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Terrorist and Colonial Borders | Terrorism In Africa

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Terrorism In Africa: Nigerian Ethnic Groups

Terrorism Africa News

It is possible that Nigeria and Somalia will each be divided into multiple countries during this decade or the next.  I could not be surprised if it happens sooner than later.  Each country is in the midst of violence that was primarily perpetrated by terrorist groups.  In each case the central government is ineffectual in managing security and delivering the needed services to the poorer districts.  If we do witness the partitioning of these countries we will be well on our way to seeing the redrawing of many national boundaries on the continent.

Over the past sixty years African countries have struggled to gain independence from their colonial rulers.  That process took close to fifty years.   South Africa was the last to achieve such a righteous milestone.  Yet, this independence was for countries who borders were set by the colonialists and looked very little like the kingdoms and ethnic domains recognized by Africans for centuries.  The continent may well be on the verge of a redrawing of the demarcations of sovereign states to more accurately represent the realities of the continent.  It could be said that the movement to throw off colonial borders may have begun with the division of Ethiopia, resulting in Ethiopia and Eritrea, followed by Sudan splitting into Sudan and South Sudan.  These divisions were preceded by violent conflicts and referendums.

Al-Shabaab claims to be a jihadist group linked to al-Qaeda with the agenda of placing all of Somalia under Sheria.  Few analysts would differ with that description.  The ability of Al-Shabaab to take control and place all of present day Somalia under Sharia is questionable.  In fact the current struggle in Somalia has spawned several ad-hock meetings of diaspora Somalians who have drawn up plans that would result in Somalia being divided into three countries separated primarily along ethnic or clan lines.

Boko Haram has its genesis and base of operation in the poor, Muslim north of Nigeria.   They have bombed Christian houses of worship, government and United Nations instillations and recently demanded that government troops and southerns leave the north.  Their terrorist operations have brought Nigeria to the brink of civil war.  Read the rest of this entry »

Al Shabaab attack Kenyan police camp, kill 7

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Al-Shabaab
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ISIOLO, Kenya | Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:58am EST

ISIOLO, Kenya

(Reuters) – Somali Islamist rebels stormed a remote police camp in northeastern Kenya, killing seven people and kidnapping three, the militants and Kenyan officials said on Thursday.

Scores of rebel fighters threw grenades and other explosives as they raided the police camp on Wednesday evening in Gerille, a town 7 km (4 miles) from the porous frontier with Somalia, Regional Commissioner Wenslas Ongayo said.

Police spokesman Eric Kiraithe said in a statement there were about 100 suspected al Shabaab attackers and two officials and a member of the public had been abducted.

Kenya has tried to beef up security along the border since it sent troops into the anarchic Horn of Africa country in October to crush the al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab insurgents.

Al Shabaab said it carried out the raid to avenge the “aggressive Kenyan invasion”.

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