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Trajectories of Terrorist & Armed Groups in Africa

Dr. Ben Nickels at the Wilson CenterTo block the spread of recruitment and radicalization in West Africa, African policymakers and their partners should seize the window of opportunity to support preventative measures in as-yet untouched communities.  The Africa Center’s Dr. Benjamin P. Nickels, Academic Chair for Transnational Threats and Counterterrorism, offered these observations while participating as a speaker at a recent Woodrow Wilson Center event entitled “Present & Future Trajectories of Terrorist Groups and Armed Non-State Actors in Africa.”

These governments should also commit to discussing security cooperation frankly and continuously, to ensure that resources and programs are having the desired effects.  To sustain gains in countering violent extremism, policymakers should begin thinking about deradicalization, reintegration, transitional justice, and other issues that will inevitably become more vital as terrorist groups like Boko Haram, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and the Islamic State in Libya are contained and overcome.