Category Archives: Terrorism

EU condemns Niger attacks

Brussels 17.03.2021 “The EU condemns in the strongest terms the terrorist attack on March 15 that killed more than 58 civilians in Banibangou in #Niger. In this historic electoral period, the EU calls for social cohesion and reaffirms its commitment to Nigeriens. #AUEU” the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell wrote on his Twitter micro blog.

At least 58 people have been killed in Niger after attacks near the border with Mali, according to the government announcement.
Unidentified gunmen opened fire on four vehicles that were bringing people back from a market in the Tillabéri region. No group has claimed the attacks, which happened on Monday, March 15.
However, at present there are two jihadist campaigns in Niger – one in the west near Mali and Burkina Faso, and another in the south-east on the border with Nigeria.

In a statement read out on public television, the Niger government said that “groups of armed, still unidentified individuals intercepted four vehicles carrying passengers back from the weekly market of Banibangou to the villages of Chinedogar and Darey-Daye”.

“The toll from these barbarous acts [is] 58 dead, one injured, a number of grain silos and two vehicles burned, and two more vehicles seized” the statement concluded.

Somali: Al Shabaab explosion in Mogadishu

Al Shabaab has claimed responsibility for an attack on a hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu, in which nine people including four attackers are reported to have been killed, according to Reuters Africa reports.
A car bomb exploded near a popular hotel in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, on Sunday, January 31. The explosion was followed by a shootout between militants and police. Militant group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the attack.

Witnesses said the massive blast occurred Sunday near Hotel Afrik, located in the vicinity of a busy security checkpoint en route to the Mogadishu airport.

Police say al-Shabab members stormed the hotel and many of the people inside were rescued, including Somalia’s former state minister for defense, Yusuf Siad Indha-Adde.
A VOA reporter, Abdikafi Yusuf Aden, was also inside the hotel at the time and survived.
“There was confusion and thick smoke rose up after the blast occurred. People were jumping down over the wall as we ran for our lives,” Aden told VOA News Somali.

Somali General Nour Galal is among the victims of the attack in Mogadishu local media reports.

Aden said he saw at least three people injured where he was hiding, but was unable to confirm what happened outside or on the other side of the hotel.
VOA reporters in Mogadishu said dozens of people were still trapped inside as night fell and security forces engaged attackers in an operation to end the siege.
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Kenya: Al Shabaab attack

One Kenyan security officer killed and three others injured in a roadside bomb targeted their vehicle along the Omarjillo-Arabia Road in Mandera County by Al-Shabaab on Wednesday afternoon, January 27, per North Eastern regional police boss Rono Bunei.

Earlier on January 24 Kenyan forces killed two Al Shabaab militants following a security operation in Mandera county near Kenya-Somalia border, according to local police. Mandera county governor, Ali Ibrahim Roba recently sent a distress call for help to deal with Al-Shabaab in the county.

Nice impact: Hungary refuses new entrants

“Africans should have a future in Africa,” Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told public radio commenting on Thursday’s terrorist attack in Nice, adding that “if you don’t want to give in, the only thing you can do is deny entry”.

“If we don’t want to see cases such as in Nice we must not allow them in,” Orbán said. “Apart from the few already here we do not want new entrants, especially not [illegal] migrants,” he said.

The Hungarian government “must not allow Brussels to force on Hungary rules under which we should allow entry to people who we do not wish to see — and then go to funerals”, Orbán said. “Despite all pressure Hungary will not follow the Brussels path.”

Orbán insisted that “the Hungarian opposition is for migration” and “opposition MEPs are in the same pack with those wishing to see Hungary change its migration rules … but as long as [Hungary has] this government, migrants will not come in.”

MALI: 25 perished in attacks

Islamist militants are suspected to be a group behind the killing 25 people including 13 soldiers in multiple attacks in central Mali, burning down an army base and ambushing troops sent as reinforcements, the army and local authorities said on October 13.

The attacks were the deadliest since the August 18 military coup d’état ousting unpopular President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, and came just days after scores of jailed jihadists were freed by the interim government in a prisoners for hostages swap.

Nine soldiers were killed in the first attack that took place overnight against a base in Sokoura near the border with Burkina Faso, the army statement reads.

At around 8:30 a.m. (0830 GMT) on Tuesday, on October 13, another three soldiers were killed in an ambush at a bridge near the base as their unit headed to the scene of the first attack, the army statement explains.

Nine militants were killed in clashes with the reinforcement unit and two of their vehicles destroyed by the air force.

In a third assault about 40 minutes later near the town of Bandiagara, gunmen ambushed a commercial truck, killing 12 traders and one soldier, according to Moulaye Guindo, the mayor of nearby Bankass, to which the traders were en route.

A witness said he saw nine bodies at the military base and helped transport 20 wounded to local medical centres.

“They (jihadists) took all the vehicles and burned those they could not take away. The camp is burned,” said the witness, who asked not to be identified for fear of reprisal.

A transitional government has been appointed since the military coup. But regional and international powers fear the violence could further destabilise the West African nation and undermine a French-directed military campaign against insurgents linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State in the wider Sahel region.

Mali: 25 perished in Islamist’s attack

Brussels 13.10.2020 Suspected Islamist militants killed 25 people including 13 soldiers in multiple raids in central Mali, burning down an army base and ambushing troops sent as reinforcements, the army and local authorities informed.

The attacks were the deadliest since the August 18 coup d’état that overthrew President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, and came just days after two hundred jihadists were freed by the interim government in a hostage for prisoners swap.

Nine soldiers were killed in the first attack that took place overnight against a base in Sokoura near the border with Burkina Faso, an army statement said.

Selon des sources locales, le bilan de cette attaque est de 14 morts dont 2 militaires.

At around 8:30 a.m. (0830 GMT) on October 13, another three soldiers were killed in an ambush at a bridge near the base as their unit headed to the scene of the first attack, it said.

Nine militants were killed in clashes with the reinforcement unit and two of their vehicles destroyed by the air force.

In a third assault about 40 minutes later near the town of Bandiagara, gunmen ambushed a commercial truck, killing 12 traders and one soldier, according to Moulaye Guindo, the mayor of nearby Bankass, to which the traders were en route.

An eye witness said he saw nine bodies at the military base and helped transport 20 wounded to local medical centres.

“They (jihadists) took all the vehicles and burned those they could not take away. The camp is burned,” said the witness, who asked not to be identified for fear of reprisal, Reuters News Agency reports.

A transitional government has been appointed since the military coup d’état. However regional and international powers fear the violence could further destabilise the West African nation and undermine a French-directed military campaign against insurgents linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State in the Sahel region.

Mali: Swiss hostage death in absentia

Brussels 10.10.2020 A Swiss hostage – Béatrice Stockly (pictured) – Evangelical Missionary in Timbuktu, who had been held in Mali for four years was killed, the Swiss foreign ministry announced on October 9 in the evening after being informed by French authorities.

“She was apparently killed by kidnappers of the Islamist terrorist organization Jama’at Nasr al-Islam wal Muslim (JNIM) about a month ago,” the ministry said in a statement on its website.

It said the exact circumstances of the killing were still unclear, but that information had been obtained by the French authorities from a recently released French hostage.

Swiss authorities had worked with Malian authorities and international partners over the past four years to try to obtain the release of the hostage, the ministry said. It did not name the hostage.

Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis condemned the killing in the statement. The ministry said it would try to find out more about the circumstances of the killing and whereabouts of the hostage’s remains.

Basel humanitarian Béatrice Stockly, kidnapped four years ago in Mali, was killed by her captors, those responsible are apparently members of an al-Qaeda group. She was allegedly killed by the kidnappers of the Islamist terrorist organization Jama’at Nasr al-Islam wal Muslim (JNIM) about a month ago.

“It is with great sadness that I learned of the death of our fellow citizen”, declared the head of the FDFA Ignazio Cassis. “I condemn this cruel act and express my deepest condolences to the relatives of the victim.”

Swiss evangelical missionary in the field Béatrice Stockly, who has been living in Timbuktu (Mali) for many years.

This woman who became Arabic-speaking, with a modest income, formerly in the service of the German mission “New Life Ghana”, had chosen to live, independently, within the population to develop local social action and offer a Christian alternative. Béatrice Stockly was kidnapped twice, in Mali, first in 2012 (Ansar Dine group) and then from 2016 (Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb), because of her religious activity.

At the start of 2016, AQIM described her as “a disbelieving “evangelizer” who, through her work, has succeeded in bringing out of Islam a number of sons of Muslims” From a strict security point of view.

The exact circumstances of the Swiss hostage assassination are not yet clear. The French authorities were informed of this execution through the intermediary of the recently released French hostage, Sophie Pétronin.

MALI: Ms.Pétronin hostage liberation

The son of the French-Swiss humanitarian worker Sophie Pétronin, the last French hostage in the Sahel since her kidnapping by armed men linked to Al Qaeda at the end of 2016, flew to Bamako, Mali, on October 6, in the hope of his soon being released.

Sophie Pétronin, 75, was kidnapped on December 24, 2016 in Gao, northern Mali, where she ran a children’s aid organization.

This morning Sébastien Chadaud-Pétronin, who has traveled to Mali several times in an attempt to secure his mother’s release, has confirmed to a several news agencies that he had boarded a commercial flight to Bamako.

“There is still nothing official,” he said shortly before his plane took off. However, he referred to converging information coming from “reliable sources”.

According to a French security source in the Sahel, the hostages are being transferred to Bamako.

In a fragile state, the French humanitarian aid worker Sophie Pétronin should be released at the same time as the Malian opponent Soumaïla Cissé, kidnapped in March by a group linked to Al Qaeda, as part of a prisoner exchange, said three security sources.

More than 200 jihadists have been released in the past two days, according to security sources in Mali. (Image below: Strasbourg).

Boko Haram killings in Cameroon

Militants of Boko Haram are suspected in killings of five civilians and injured several others on August 31 night in raids on the remote localities of Kouyape and Talakachi of Cameroon’s Far North region, according to local authorities. (Image: illustration)

In Talakachi, one man was killed and three others injured after the militants attacked the house of a respected community figure, officials said.

The police officer said September 1 bombing followed a Boko Haram raid on a village, adding information about a terrorist suisidal incident “The people fled and a young man strapped with explosives chased them and blew himself up.”

The government uses the term Boko Haram to refer loosely to the Sahel jihadist group of the same name, as well as the breakaway Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) group.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said it “firmly condemns this attack which killed seven civilians and wounded 14 others in Kouyape village.

“The suicide bomb attack took place near Kolofata, close to the border with Nigeria, where some 18,000 internally displaced people have sought safety over the past seven years,” the refugee agency said.

In Kouyape, the militants raided a camp for internally displaced persons (IDP) who were asleep, killing four people and wounding several others, according to several security sources, who said the attackers probably used an improvised explosive device on the IDPs.

The attack on the IDPs was the second of its kind in about a month in the volatile region.

In early August, at least 18 IDPs were killed when assailants threw an explosive device, higly likely a grenade, on a site hosting about 800 IDPs near the village of Nguetchewe, in the region, according to Cameroon army.

Cameroon’s far north, an impoverished strip of land between Chad and Nigeria, has been a regular target of raids and assaults by Boko Haram since 2013.

The jihadist group launched its insurgency in Nigeria in 2009 before spilling over into neighbouring Cameroon, Niger and Chad.

It has killed more than 30,000 people, forcing three million to flee their homes, according to the UN.

“We are horrified by these senseless attacks on people who have been torn from their villages, fleeing violence perpetrated by armed gangs which rage in the region, only to be stripped of safety again after they just found refuge elsewhere,” said Olivier Guillaume Beer, UNHCR Representative in Cameroon.

“The killing of innocent civilians has to stop,” he said. “We call on armed groups to respect the rights and lives of civilian populations.”

The attack came a month after 18 people died and 15 were injured by an armed group on the Nguetchewe IDP site. Two young suicide bombers were involved in the attacks, according to officials.

Boko Haram has staged nearly 90 attacks in Cameroon since January.

On August 25, ISWAP attacked a Cameroonian island near the Nigerian border killing 14 people, according to Nigerian authorities.

Security experts say ISWAP is extending its grip and influence around Lake Chad, a vast, marshy area also shared by Niger and Chad.

The police officer said on September 1 bombing followed a Boko Haram raid on a village, adding: “The people fled and a young man strapped with explosives chased them and blew himself up.”

The Cameroonian government uses the term Boko Haram to refer loosely to the Nigerian jihadist group of the same name, as well as the breakaway Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) group.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said it “firmly condemns this attack which killed seven civilians and wounded 14 others in Kouyape village.

“The suicide bomb attack took place near Kolofata, close to the border with Nigeria, where some 18,000 internally displaced people have sought safety over the past seven years,” the refugee agency said.

Cameroon’s far north, an impoverished strip of land between Chad and Nigeria, has been a regular target of raids and assaults by Boko Haram since 2013.

The jihadist group launched its insurgency in Nigeria in 2009 before brkeaking into neighbouring Cameroon, Niger and Chad.

It has killed more than 30,000 people, forcing three million to flee their homes, according to the UN.

“We are horrified by these senseless attacks on people who have been torn from their villages, fleeing violence perpetrated by armed gangs which rage in the region, only to be stripped of safety again after they just found refuge elsewhere,” said Olivier Guillaume Beer, UNHCR Representative in Cameroon.

“The killing of innocent civilians has to stop,” he said. “We call on armed groups to respect the rights and lives of civilian populations.”

The attack came a month after 18 people died and 15 were injured by an armed group on the Nguetchewe IDP site. Two young suicide bombers were involved in the attacks, according to officials.

Boko Haram has engaged in nearly 90 attacks in Cameroon since January.

On August 25, ISWAP attacked a Cameroonian island near the Nigerian border killing 14 people, according to Nigerian authorities.

Security experts say ISWAP is extending its grip and influence around Lake Chad, a vast, marshy area also shared by Niger and Chad.

Nigeria: jihadists abdicted hundreds of displaced

Insurgents from the Islamic State group West Africa Province (ISWAP), affiliated to Boko Haram, attacked Kukawa in the Lake Chad region late on August 18, seizing hundreds of people who had just returned to their homes after spending nearly two years in displacement camps, said Babakura Kolo, head of a local militia.

“The terrorists attacked the town in 22 trucks around 4:00 pm (1600GMT) yesterday and engaged soldiers guarding the town in a fierce battle,” he said.

Residents of Kukawa, escorted by the military, had returned to the town just on August 2, on the orders of the Borno state authorities.

They had been living in camps in the regional capital Maiduguri, 180 kilometers away, where they fled following a brutal attack in November 2018.

A local chief who accompanied the residents to the town said the people had returned with the hope of cultivating their farmlands “only to end up in the hands of the insurgents”.

“We don’t know what they would do to them but I hope they don’t harm them,” said the chief, who asked not to be identified for safety reasons.

A security source who confirmed the incident to AFP said fighter jets were deployed from Maiduguri on August 19 to “tackle the situation”, without giving further details.

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