Country Risk

Progress with formation of Sahel force triggers union of jihadist rivals in Mali, raising terrorism risks

19 December 2017


Two rival Sahel jihadist groups – the Al-Qaeda-linked Jama’at Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) and the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) – announced on 14 December that they were joining forces against counter-terrorism operations, following reports that their strength had been increased by jihadists coming from Libya and possibly Syria.

The previous day, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) pledged EUR130 million (USD153 million) for the G5-Sahel regional counter-terrorism force at a summit hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron. This adds to pledges already made, reaching the initial EUR250 million required to make the force operational.

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