Soldiers from Cote d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso conducted their first joint operation against jihadists insurgency near their shared border, neutralising eight suspected militants and arresting 14 others, Ivorian army said on May 24.
Burkina Faso and its neighbours Mali and Niger in West Africa’s vast Sahel zone are conducting operaions against Islamist insurgencies with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State, claiming to re-consturct the historic Caliphe of Sokoto.
Those terrorist groups have been strengthening and expanding their range of operations, leaving coastal countries like Cote d’Ivoire at risk of violence and unrest breaking into their territories.
The joint operation was launched on May 11 with about 1,000 Ivorian soldiers participating from their side of the 580-kilometre border with Burkina Faso, Ivorian army announced in a statement.
The suspected militants were killed in Burkina Faso, the army confirmed, adding that the operation is ongoing.
Jihadist attacks in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger have escalated dramatically over the past year despite significant military support from France, which is engaged in partnerships with former colonies.
While Cote d’Ivoire has mostly been spared the violence affecting its neighbours, it was the victim in 2016 of an attack claimed by al Qaeda in which gunmen killed 19 people at a beach resort.
Islamic State fighters claim three attacks targeting Libyan National Army forces in the vicinity of Sabah, announcing it a part of “Battle of Attrition” military campaign. According to the Intelligence group SITE this claim is a first one since June 2019, adding that Sabha area is a past “hot spot” of Islamic State jihad operations.
Attrition warfare represents an attempt to grind down an opponent and its superior numbers, however when attritional methods have worn down the enemy sufficiently to make other methods feasible, attritional actions are abandoned in favor of other strategies.
The inhabitants of Sabah have rejected the authority of the expired mandate Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli and allied with Libyan National Army led by Khalifa Haftar.
Mozambique security forces killed at least 129 insurgents in the northern region Cabo Delgado that has been plagued by violence for at least the last three years, the interior minister said on April 28.
Since 2017, infrequent but violent raids on government buildings and villages by armed groups with suspected links to the Islamic State (ISIS) have intensified in northernmost province of one Africa’s poorest nations.
The interior ministry said the 129 killings were the total for the month, and were a retaliation for an attack in Xitaxi in Muidumbe district earlier in April, where insurgents killed 52 villagers.
The insurgents profile reamins obscure, though initial attacks were claimed by a group known as Ahlu Sunnah Wa-Jama. More recently, Islamic State (IS) has claimed a number of attacks.
France hopes the United States will not diminish support for French military operations in West Africa, where jihadist groups affiliated with Islamic State and Al-Qaeda are increasing their activities.
Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian made the appeal as Defence Minister Florence Parly was due to meet U.S. counterparts on January 27 to discuss the crisis in the Sahel.
Last year the Pentagon announced plans to withdraw hundreds of military personnel from Africa as it redirects resources to address challenges from China and Russia after two decades focused on counter-terrorism operations. Those changes are following an ongoing global troop review spearheaded by Defense Secretary Mark Esper.
The possibility has alarmed France, which relies on U.S. intelligence and logistics for its 4,500-strong troops in the Sahel.
“I hope they will be rational to keep this partnership … and that good sense will prevail,” le Drian told reporters.
The U.S. currently has 6,000 military personnel in Africa. Although some experts say a re-positioning of forces is overdue, many U.S. politicians and experts share French concerns about jihad spreading in Sahel region.
Faced with a persistent jihadist threat, the leaders of the G5 Sahel countries and France announced the establishment of a new operational framework with redefined priorities and concentrated action on the so-called “three borders” area between Mali , Niger and Burkina Faso.
The military coalition will have a “joint command” between the Barkhane force and the joint force of the G5 Sahel, “by integrating our intelligence forces, our military forces” in the area of the three borders, “with a much stronger latitude of engagement. ”, said Emmanuel Macron.
“Beyond that, I decided to engage additional combat capabilities – 220 soldiers to initiate this dynamic will swell the troops already present on the Barkhane field”, which currently counts 4,500 men, added the French head of state.
“The priority is the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (EIGS), which does not prevent us from fighting all the armed terrorist groups but it is the priority enemy because the most dangerous,” he said. for follow-up. A month after threatening to withdraw French troops from the region in a context of anti-French sentiment, Emmanuel Macron estimated that he had obtained the necessary “clarification” from his partners who in a joint declaration expressed the wish to see the Barkhane operation.
Islamic State terrorist group claims the attack on Inates miliatry camp in Niger close to Mali border. They have killed at least 71 soldiers in an offensive on a military base in western Niger – the deadliest in several years.
The militants, indending to establish Caliphate on the Sahel territories, and linked to al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group (IS) have staged attacks in the Sahel region this year despite the presence of thousands of regional and foreign troops.
Operation Barkhane is an ongoing anti-insurgent operation in Africa’s Sahel, launched in August 2014. It consists of a 4,500-strong French troops, which is permanently headquartered in N’Djamena the capital of Chad. The operation has been composed with five countries – former French colonies: Sahel: Burkina Faso,Chad, Mali, Niger, Mauritania.
Nigerian will require the travelers in three northeastern states to carry identification cards in an effort to track the members of Boko Haram and Islamic State, the army statesman announced.
The new requirement follows credible information that members of the two terrorist groups were hiding among civilians in the towns and villages of the states.
The army said it would “strictly check” the ID card of those moving or passing through the states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.
Islamic State (IS) terrorist group killed 10 Nigerian soldiers in an assault on the northeastern town of Magumeri, the group claimed through related news agency AMAQ.
The organization leading jihad said the attack on the soldiers took place in the town in northeastern Borno state on May, 1. It published atrocious pictures of burned barracks and dead bodies claiming they are from the site.
Fighters from the Islamic State West Africa Province faction of Boko Haram in trucks and on motorcycles stormed into the base in the town of Magumeri, around 40 km (25 miles) northwest of Borno state capital Maiduguri, AFP reported.
Several sources in Nigeria, including one military, confirmed the killings, adding that the fighters stormed the town at roughly 1745 local time (1645 GMT), overran military personnel and raided local shops.