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Islamic State celebrates expansion in Mozambique despite continued counter-terrorism operations in Cabo Delgado

Key points

  • Event: The Islamic State celebrated its territorial expansion in Mozambique in the latest edition of its weekly online newspaper al-Naba,calling for the Christian population to convert to Islam or pay the Islamic tax
  • Significance: The focus of the edition was likely influenced by the series of counter-insurgency operations and assurance of presidential pardons to militants upon surrender, consequently leading to at least 90 defections in northern Mozambique between September and October 2022
  • Outlook: Despite the efforts of regional and Mozambican security forces, Wilayat Mozambique will likely continue to remain a threat in Cabo Delgado Province in the medium term, as its recent operations demonstrate an expansion beyond its typical areas of operations in the province


    On 17 November, the Islamic State in its latest issue of al-Naba applauded the successful expansion of Wilayat Mozambique, or Mozambique Province, in Mozambique's Cabo Delgado Province. In the editorial, the group highlighted its targeting of mining projects and hinted focus on maritime jihad. Janes observed an image on Twitter on 21 November purportedly showing an alleged handwritten letter distributed by Wilayat Mozambique militants in the Mocamia district of Cabo Delgado Province, urging the Christian population in the country to either convert to Islam or pay the ‘Jizya' tax to ensure their safety. In October 2022, the Islamic State had claimed attacks on four villages with Christian majority in Macomia (Nguida and Litandacua villages), Muidumbe (Mandava village), and Nangade (Ntoli village) districts in northern Cabo Delgado.


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