In the disaster-stricken and terror-plagued north of Mozambique, the Islamic State (IS) carried out an attack earlier this month that resulted in the deaths of seven people, according to local sources.
An analyst at Grey Dynamics says the attack was carried out on the evening of Wednesday, July 3rd, in the Cabo Delgado province. A police officer and six civilians were killed, with two infants among the victims.
Jihadist insurgents have been targeting the gas-rich province for the last few years. They’re calling themselves Shabaab, meaning “youth” in Arabic, however, there is no proven link to the Somalia-based group, al-Shabaab. Since October of 2017, the group has killed more than 250 people and displaced thousands from their homes.
Interestingly, the attacks started to happen just as the Mozambique government started to explore its gas reserves. Even with all the large-scale investments and the increased presence of security, officials say the attacks are only increasing.
According to Grey Dynamics, which monitors security threats in Africa, IS published a statement on July 5th claiming responsibility for the strike. This is the terrorist group’s second recent claim for an attack in Mozambique, following the June 3rd attack.
The Crusader Mozambican Army in Metubi village in Mocimboa da Praia. An unspecified number of Mozambican soldiers allegedly lost their lives and were injured. Allah made them (the Mozambican forces) turn back in defeat. The mujahideen captured weapons, ammunition, and rockets as spoils, and unto Allah is all praise.”
“Metubi village does exist, but it is in Quissanga district, not in Mocimboa da Praia,” said police officials to All Africa. Furthermore, local sources in Cabo Delgado deny any attack on Metubi. “The photos published by IS show nothing that indicates they were shot in Mozambique,” according to the officials.
Ever since IS lost its last territory in Syria, it has been desperately trying to win the information war. On the other hand, it can also be claimed that the Mozambican authorities are trying to save face and not scare foreign direct investors. The evidence does, however, lean more towards the authorities, which is bittersweet since there is another menace claiming the lives of its people.