One month after the jihadist group conducted a terrorist attack in Mali’s capital killing over 20 people, the French military launched a four hour raid against Al Murabitoon reportedly killing several of its fighters in northern Mali.
The video confirms that the jihadist group holds the hostage and that he was still alive as of two weeks ago.
The statement comes just days after a different statement was released by the group in which it confirmed Mokhtar Belmokhtar, who is openly loyal to al Qaeda, as its emir.
The statement is the first claim of responsibility despite reports that another jihadist group was likely behind the siege.
A group called Al Murabitoon has released a video featuring its emir, a former Egyptian special forces named Hisham Ali Ashmawi. He is wanted for a string of attacks in Egypt, including the assassination of Egypt’s chief prosecutor in late June. Al Murabitoon makes its loyalty to al Qaeda emir Ayman al Zawahiri clear in the video.
The explosion killed three civilians and left 16 wounded, including nine Nigerien UN peacekeepers. The group said that it was directly targeting Nigerien troops because of Niger’s president Mahamadou Issoufou’s response in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris.
The assault, which has been claimed by the Al Qaeda-affiliated group, is the first of its kind in Bamako.
Al Murabitoon, the group formed in August 2013 by the merger of the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) and Mokhtar Belmokhtar’s al-Mulathameen Brigade, reportedly issued a statement on Jan. 4 detailing its attacks in Mali, Algeria, and Niger in 2013. It also threatened France, warning that it would continue to attack […]
Mokhtar Belmokhtar united his group, the al-Mulathameen Brigade, with Ahmed el Tilemsi’s Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa to form the al-Murabitoon. The new group has praised the emirs of al Qaeda and the Taliban.
German national Jorg Lange was finally freed after being held captive by Islamic State militants in the Sahel since 2018.
At least three Italians, one Polish citizen, and one American have been kidnapped in the Sahel over the last two months. At least five other Westerners remain in captivity in the region – all of which are held by jihadist groups.
Coming roughly a month after France reported it had killed Abu Walid al Sahrawi, the Islamic State’s leader in the Sahel, the Islamic State itself has finally subtly confirmed the reports. The jihadist group has not publicly named a successor.
Northern Ivory Coast has seen a substantial increase in suspected jihadist attacks since March of this year. Much of the violence is emanating from southwestern Burkina Faso, where al Qaeda’s Katibat Macina is expanding.
In an interview with the Islamic State’s Al-Naba newsletter, Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, the leader of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara, attempts to paint al Qaeda’s efforts in the region as rife with internal squabbles and disunity.
In exchange for the release of dozens of imprisoned members from Mali’s prisons, Al Qaeda’s Group for Support of Islam and Muslims (JNIM) has freed four hostages, three of them foreign. JNIM has since celebrated the prisoner swap, including a personal appearance by its overall emir, Iyad Ag Ghaly, in northern Mali.
The Libyan National Army (LNA) claims to have captured Hisham al-Ashmawy, a former Egyptian officer who defected to the jihadists’ cause. Ashmawy has been accused of orchestrating jihadist operations in both Egypt and Libya. The Egyptian government alleges that he has been involved in a series of terrorist attacks targeting officials.
The State Department announced today that it has designated Jama’at Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM), al Qaeda’s branch in Mali and West Africa, as a terrorist organization. JNIM and its leader, Iyad Ghali, are openly loyal to al Qaeda and the Taliban’s emir.
While no group has claimed responsibility yet, it was most likely conducted by al Qaeda’s Group for Support of Islam and Muslims.
Today’s claims of responsibility are the first for the group in Burkina Faso since 2016.
The US military announced that it killed Musa Abu Dawud, a high-ranking al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb leader in Libya, in an airstrike last weekend. Dawud is an established jihadist who has been in the fight with the GSPC and AIQM for at least three decades.
JNIM’s new video shows its fighters across Mali and even in Burkina Faso. The video also shows the group’s rising media capabilities.
The recent battle comes less two weeks after the Tuareg militias last clashed with militants from the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara.
According to a Mauritanian website that often publishes claims from jihadists, al Qaeda’s Group for Support of Islam and Muslims (JNIM) claimed yesterday’s terrorist attacks in the Burkinabe capital. JNIM later officially claimed the attacks via its Telegram channel.
The operations, which occurred alongside French special forces, were to reportedly kill or capture Abu Walid al Sahrawi, the leader of the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara.
At least 276 attacks in Mali and its neighboring countries were linked al Qaeda in 2017. This includes a significant shift of violence to central Mali, as well as northern Burkina Faso.
US AFRICOM has confirmed that three US Special Forces troops have been killed in an ambush near Mali. The three are the first American soldiers to die in combat in the country.
The attacks represent a significant increase in jihadist attacks in northern Burkina Faso. In addition, the use of improvised explosive devices, previously unknown to the country, is on the rise.
The video serves as both a warning to foreigners and foreign governments in Mali, as well as a proof of life video for each of the six foreign hostages currently held by JNIM in Mali.
Johan Gustafsson was reportedly released by al Qaeda militants in Mali and has arrived back in Sweden. Another person abducted alongside him, South African Stephen Malcolm, remains in captivity.
Yesterdays assault near Bamako is yet another instance of the jihadist group targeting popular resorts in West Africa.