Tags: Islam | radical | Africa | Qaeda

Radical Islam Takes Strong Hold in Africa

Thursday, 07 Jan 2010 11:33 AM

NAIROBI — Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Shebab fighting for the control of Somalia, or Nigeria's home-grown sects -- radical Islam is taking hold in sub-Saharan Africa, albeit in many varied forms.

The groups in question all claim to be inspired by the Taliban or Al-Qaeda, which carried out its first major operations on African soil -- the 1998 simultaneous truck bomb attacks on the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in which several hundred people died.

AQIM, commanded from Algeria, operates in the vast Sahel region where it has staged multiple kidnappings, and in some cases killings, of Westerners over the last three years.

Somalia's Shebab are trying to impose their brand of Sharia law on war-torn Somalia. In recent months they have multiplied suicide attacks aimed at toppling the UN-backed transitional government.

Nigeria, where 12 northern states reintroduced Islamic law in 2000, is in the spotlight after the son of one of the country's prominent bankers was charged with trying on December 25 to blow up a passenger jet over Detroit.

In July Boko Haram, a Taliban-inspired sect whose name means "Western education is a sin" and which seeks to unite Muslims under a Caliphate, carried out simultaneous attacks in four northern states.

"Some Islamist groups in sub-Saharan Africa have recently become more radicalized, particularly in terms of inflammatory rhetoric and a few recruits for armed jihad," said Fawaz A. Gerges, professor of Middle Eastern politics and international relations at the London School of Economics.

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NAIROBI — Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Shebab fighting for the control of Somalia, or Nigeria's home-grown sects -- radical Islam is taking hold in sub-Saharan Africa, albeit in many varied forms.
Islam,radical,Africa,Qaeda
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2010-33-07
Thursday, 07 Jan 2010 11:33 AM
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