Islamic Militancy in Africa

By Africa Center for Strategic Studies
Updated: 11/05/2012

By Terje Østebø, Africa Center for Strategic Studies, November 2012

Suspected Shabaab Members Captured in Somali Capital

The rise in Islamic militancy in the Sahel, northern Nigeria, and the Horn of Africa has elevated attention to this evolving security concern. Hopes that Africa’s historically moderate interpretations of Islam would suffice to filter extremist views from gaining meaningful traction seem increasingly misplaced. More generally, understanding of this unconventional security challenge is often based more on speculation than informed assessment. Responses must avoid conflating distinct Islamist actors while addressing local level perceptions of disaffection and under-representation that underpin support for militants.

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