The number of jihadist groups is on the rise in Africa
In Africa, there are more and more armed groups associated with the so-called Islamic State and Al-Qaeda. However, behind their actions, their motivation is not purely Islamic ideology but a clear desire for profit covered by the slogans of jihad. The last stronghold of fundamentalists is in the north of Mozambique, where they have driven out over a million inhabitants. These people are now hungry and need urgent humanitarian assistance.
New jihadists focus mainly on taking control of a specific local territory that has rich deposits in its land – oil, natural gas, gold, diamonds and other precious minerals. Increasingly, they also impose a tax on the poor local population on land, water wells or cattle.
Their expansion is possible thanks to the indifference and passivity of the international community, which only sees the consequences of extremism as the masses of new refugees get poorer.
Fundamentalists take over the land, spreading terror and tempting young people with no prospects by the vision of easy earnings and a better life. New jihadist groups are operating from Mauritania to the Horn of Africa to the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mozambique.
The situation is especially dramatic in Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso, which are struggling with a humanitarian disaster of enormous proportions. Last year alone, terrorist groups killed over 5,000 civilians there. One and a half million people had to leave their homes in panic, and four million are living on the brink of starvation.
A similar situation prevails on Lake Chad (on the border of Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad), where terrorists increasingly attack schools, kidnapping students for ransom and forcefully enlisting them in their troops. The Congo also remains a battlefield for access to local natural resources, including coltan, which is invaluable for the electronics industry. Taking advantage of the ignorance of multitudes of uneducated young men, Islamists proclaim that joining their ranks is safe from the coronavirus.