Has Kenya’s participation in AMISOM bolstered them as a regional power?

On 12 June, the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) partners gathered in Nairobi to evaluate the current military stabilization projects in the wake of the nine year al Shabaab insurgency (New Vision Uganda, 12 June 2018). Over the course of its 11 year existence, the 21,600-strong multinational force has engaged al Shabaab in 1,884…

Regional Overview – Africa 28 May 2018

There were important developments in Burkina Faso, Mozambique, the DRC and Somalia on the week of May 20th. In Burkina Faso, the state forces likely thwarted another major attack by Islamist militants in the capital, Ouagadougou. On May 22nd, the military police raided a house harbouring Al-Mourabitoun militants at the southeastern outskirts of the capital.…

Somalia – Has the recent western involvement in Somalia been effective?

Since July 2017, the United States-AFRICOM has dramatically escalated activities in Somalia. This involvement relies heavily on the use of unmanned drones, typically targeting high-profile al-Shabaab figures. Over this period, the US has conducted 44 known air strikes, resulting in nearly 400 fatalities (see Figure 1). US land force numbers have increased steadily, with officials…

Al Shabaab and Boko Haram: Patterns of Violence

Which group is the most violent in Africa? A recent report exploring Africa’s active militant Islamic groups aimed to tackle this question. The report, produced by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS), argued that Somalia’s Al Shabaab has eclipsed Nigeria’s Boko Haram, to become “Africa’s deadliest group”. The claim was supported with data drawn…

Somalia – September 2017 Update

Somalia continues to be the most conflict-affected country in Africa in 2017 with 1,537 organized violent events. By comparison, South Sudan is the second most violent state, with 686 organized violent events thus far this year. Somalia has also incurred the most reported fatalities thus far this year (3,287 reported fatalities). While battles continue to…

Kenya – June 2017 Update

The parties, locations and intensity of political violence in Kenya has varied widely since the beginning of 2017 (see Figure 1). Increased political tension due to the upcoming August election has generated fear that Kenya’s multiple conflicts will intensify during the upcoming voting period. Political and land- motivated unrest dominates the western counties while al-Shabaab…