Dina Mahmoud (London)
At a time when many are preoccupied with the escalating terrorist threat in the African Sahel region in western Africa, analysts and experts are ringing alarm bells to warn of the danger threatening the eastern part of Africa, especially in light of the escalation of attacks launched there by the Al-Shabaab movement associated with Al-Qaeda, and other bloody organizations.
Experts stress that this movement, which is classified as the most financing and violent wing of “al-Qaeda”, still represents the main source of threat in the Horn of Africa, and the east of the continent in general, despite the efforts made by the Somali government and its African and Western supporters to contain this. danger.
After months of launching a clan government campaign in Somalia to curb this terrorist movement, which coincided with the announcement by political and military officials in Mogadishu that the year 2023 will witness the defeat of the “Al-Shabaab” militants, they responded with two suicide bombings, which took place early this month in the center of the country, and killed large number of dead.
The danger posed by this terrorist movement is of a more complex nature, given its ability to recruit militants from neighboring countries to Somalia, such as Ethiopia and Kenya, as well as its material capabilities, which help it to purchase weapons from the black market, along with receiving equipment from the wing of « Al-Qaeda in Yemen.
The terrorist movement finances its activities in this regard, by imposing royalties on truck drivers, which pass on the roads controlled by its terrorists in Somalia, which gives it the opportunity to carry out large-scale attacks, whether inside Somalia, or in neighboring countries, such as Uganda and Kenya. And others.
On the other hand, the ruling authorities in Uganda are facing attacks by terrorists linked to militants affiliated with the bloody “ISIS” organization, in Central African countries, some of whom move across borders.
In statements published on the website of the American Gatestone Institute for Research and Studies, former Pentagon official Lawrence A. Franklin, that the danger of the “Al-Shabaab” movement and other bloody organizations active in the east of the brown continent is not limited to the Horn of Africa only, but can extend to Western countries, especially the United States.
Al-Shabab had already discussed, as Franklin says, the possibility of launching an attack on American soil, similar to what happened in the terrorist attacks of September 11, which struck Washington and New York in 2001.
The former official, who previously served in the ranks of the US Army, indicates that the threat posed by “al-Shabaab” is accompanied by risks arising from the activities of other extremist organizations that are trying to secure a foothold in African countries, such as Mozambique, located on the eastern coast of the continent. Overlooking the Indian Ocean.
Franklin says that these terrorist movements are trying to make this country a base for their operations, so that they can send armed cells from there to countries located in the Indian Ocean, such as the Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius and the Seychelles.
In addition, the danger of the expansion of the influence of terrorists in Mozambique may eventually extend to countries located in the southern regions of the continent, which prompted a country like South Africa to send aid to combat terrorism, and even forces, to confront terrorists operating in this Portuguese colony. previous.
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