Al Qaeda’s branch in East Africa “still maintained control over large portions of the country” and “retained the ability to carry out high-profile attacks” in 2017 despite increased targeting by the US military, the African Union, and the Somali government.
Shabaab has managed to launch 418 attacks of different types during the six-month timeframe in support of its persistent and ongoing insurgency against Somalia’s weak central government and allied African Union forces.
Shabaab has claimed a number of attacks in recent days across southern Somalia, including briefly recapturing the strategic town of Balad just north of Mogadishu.
The US military has stepped up its attacks on al Qaeda’s branch in East Africa after the jihadist outfit has regained ground over the past two years. AFRICOM has targeted Shabaab 10 times since the beginning of June.
The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) says that 12 Ugandan soldiers were killed in an ambush by Shabaab yesterday. The al Qaeda branch claims the casualties were much higher and a local official told the press that 24 bodies were carried away from the scene.
Shabaab, al Qaeda’s branch in Somalia, released a nearly hour-long video celebrating al Qaeda’s legacy and promoting its war as part of the global jihad. The group also advertised its “Mohamed Atta Training Camp for Martyrdom Seekers.”
Mogadishu Security Declines As Armed Forces Stretched Outside Capital
On the shifting frontlines of the fight against al-Shabaab