VOA: “Politics Hinders Capture of Somalia’s Kismayo” – a major port city and stronghold of Al Shabab.
Somalia’s new parliament plans to select a new president for the country on Monday.
“The Movement … is fighting to establish an Islamic state and we will wage war against anyone who tries to stop us,” Abul Qaqa, a spokesman, said in a written statement issued from the group’s headquarters in the northeastern city of Maiduguri.
“This is the reason we attacked the telecoms firms, because they are providing the security personnel with information used to track our members. We will continue attacking them until they stop,” he said.
The shift in tactics underscores how much trial and error figures in Boko Haram’s thinking, and how unpredictable the group can be. This move will undoubtedly elevate investors’ concerns,
as it is the first time I am aware of that the group has conducted a major attack against private businesses. (As commenter Chavuka points out, Boko Haram has attacked newspaper offices in the past.)
Two developments connected to associates and family of dead Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Qadhafi occurred this week: Mauritania, after months of refusing to extradite former intelligence chief Abdullah al Senussi, deported him to Libya; and Niger has granted the Colonel’s son Saadi permission to travel. Saadi was previously under house arrest.
Also in Niger, the government has charged that international aid for flood victims “is being [illegally] diverted to other places.”
IRIN on flooding in Chad.
A video has been released showing four French hostages in northern Mali, held by Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.
The employees of the French company Areva were kidnapped in Arlit, Niger on September 15, 2010 and were transferred to northern Mali which is now controlled by armed Islamists.
What else is happening in the Sahel?