IGAD Region To Explore New Approaches Against Terrorism

A transnational security threat of terrorism has re-emerged in the IGAD region with a vengeance, requiring a bold new regional approach to counteracting it. Currently, the region also faces serious and complex transnational security threats including financing terrorism, violent extremism, cyber-crime, trafficking in humans and drugs, Commander Abebe Muluneh, Director General of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Security Sector Program said. Commander Abebe told journalists on Saturday, 18 May 2019, that Al-Shabaab, Al-Qaeda’s affiliated militant group in the Horn of Africa, has long been perceived as a Somali terrorist organization but now posed a stern security threat to the wider IGAD region.

A transnational security threat of terrorism has re-emerged in the IGAD region with a vengeance, requiring a bold new regional approach to counteracting it. Currently, the region also faces serious and complex transnational security threats including financing terrorism, violent extremism, cyber-crime, trafficking in humans and drugs, Commander Abebe Muluneh, Director General of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Security Sector Program said.

Commander Abebe told journalists on Saturday, 18 May 2019, that Al-Shabaab, Al-Qaeda’s affiliated militant group in the Horn of Africa, has long been perceived as a Somali terrorist organization but now posed a stern security threat to the wider IGAD region.

However, at least since 2010, Al-Shabaab has aspired to become a truly regional threat, with membership and horizons that transcend national borders, the commander stated.

“Al-Shabab is trying to recruit members from non-Somalis from our regions and its transnational and national borders effort to attack in other territories like Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and the like that almost all states in the IGAD region are victims of threat,” he pointed out.

Noting that international terrorists have sought the IGAD region as particularly a safe haven for their operation since the 1990s, the major threats come from Al-Shabaab especially from Jaysh Ayman, a transnational military wing fighting against Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Even losing after several cities and towns, Al-Shabaab still controls large swathes territory and taxes trade and businesses to fund its operation and it continues to carry out complex attacks in the region even against the 22 000 strong African Union to Somalia (AMISOM) and other East African countries’ forces including Ethiopia.

“The group is active in six countries Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda and Tanzania. Al-Shabab has repeatedly been striking five of them excluding Ethiopia. The only country that has not been targeted to date is Ethiopia in the East African countries from those terrorist attacks,” he said.

Source: Political Analysis