11 July 2019

Africa: Anxiety Over Escalating Terrorism in Africa

Nairobi — UNITED Nations (UN) Secretary-General, António Guterres, has denounced the rising threat of terrorism in the continent.

He was speaking in Nairobi, Kenya during a high-level conference on counter-terrorism and the prevention of violence extremism.

"I would like to honour the tens of thousands of African victims of terrorism and to express solidarity with African countries that have suffered terrorist attacks that shock with their barbarity and disregard for human life," Guterres told delegates.

He noted Kenya itself had endured numerous terrorist attacks, including the killing of 21 people in the Dusit hotel complex in Nairobi earlier this year.

Eight police officers were also killed when their vehicle struck an improvised explosive device northeast of the country.

"The threat of terrorism in Africa is spreading and destabilising entire regions," Guterres said.

He expressed concern at the increasing risks in West Africa where Boko Haram and its splinter faction terrorise local populations and attack security forces.

In Mali, terrorist groups have launched regular attacks against local and international security forces.

The violence has spilled over into neighbouring countries such as Burkina Faso and Niger.

Gueterres noted, terrorists used sexual violence to spread fear and assert control while children were forced to join terror groups.

He however commended locals for courage and resilience.

"The determination of Africans to find solutions to the scourge of terrorism is clear. And the role of women is inspirational in so many ways," Gueterres said.

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