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ACSS: “Attacks by Islamic Extremists in Northern Mozambique Decreased by 71% in 2023”

ACSS: “Attacks by Islamic Extremists in Northern Mozambique Decreased by 71% in 2023”

The Africa Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS) has revealed that violence perpetrated by Islamic extremists in Cabo Delgado province, northern Mozambique, decreased by 71% in 2023, thanks to the intervention of the Rwandan Armed Forces and the Southern African Development Community Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM).

According to a report released on Wednesday (14), the total number of violent incidents recorded was 127, which caused 260 deaths, despite reports of a further 850,000 internally displaced people who have not yet returned home.

“The success of the actions is attributable to the offensive launched last year by SADC and Rwandan forces, deployed in July 2021 to help the Mozambican army fight terrorism and dislodge the extremists who had occupied the districts of Palma and Mocímboa da Praia,” the document explains.

According to the Washington-based institute, “the military managed to regain control of 90 per cent of the territory occupied by the Ahlu Sunnah wa Jama’a (ASWJ, a group known as al Shabaab) insurgents, who now operate in small groups without bases, carrying out random attacks on civilians”.

The organisation says that in the same period there has been an 80% reduction in violence against civilians, a figure that is considered “particularly remarkable”, given that the violence of Islamic militants in northern Mozambique has always been characterised by high levels of violence against civilians.

In general, the ACSS warns that the number of deaths as a result of violence by Islamic extremist groups continues to rise on the African continent, from 19,400 in 2022 to 23,300 in 2023, with more than 80 per cent of the deaths occurring in the Sahel and Somalia.

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