02/13/2020 Mozambique (International Christian Concern) – Over the past two years, there has been a growing humanitarian crisis in Cabo Delgado, Northern Mozambique. This area has been struggling with a growing level of violence that has left hundreds of citizens dead and many feeling completely unsafe. Reports claim that at least 100,000 people have been displaced due to this violence, which has only compounded the problems left after a massive cyclone hit last year.
ISIS has claimed that they have a new sect in Mozambique and DRC, called the Central Africa Province (CAP). They have claimed responsibility for many of the attacks that have left hundreds dead. Though they have claimed this, there is also a small likely hood that this group does not have the power or presence that they are trying to claim. Another group based in Cabo Delgado, Ahlu Sunnah Wal Jammah (ASWJ), commonly known as al-Shabab, has also been attacking and killing people in this area for several years.
Claims from contacts in the area have stated that they do not believe that this second group is trying to fight any religious war, but is more based on the economic struggle taking place. Wealthy individuals have been stealing land and resources from the area for decades, including the vast oil resources. This has left the population in destitution. Many of these have likely turned to crime as a way to provide for themselves.
If ISIS is trying to move into this area, though, they will likely find it an easy place to set up. Poverty, local crime, and violence make it a perfect staging ground for their new branch. The government in Mozambique, as well as surrounding countries, need to do their best to stop this from happening. If not, they could find themselves in a battle for control of their own country over the next few years.
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