As more than 2,300 people have been reported dead with over 570,000 fleeing their homes since an invasion by the Al-Shabab group, carried out at the gas-rich province, the Mozambique president, Filipe Nyusi, had said that they were aware of the jihadists five years before their attacks.
While addressing lawmakers, Nyusi revealed details about the organisation.
“The radicalisation was promoted by a citizen of Tanzanian nationality identified as Abdul Shakulo,
“He urged disobedience to the constitution, banned Muslim children from attending (state) schools and required them to attend madrasas or Koranic schools,” he revealed, concerning the leader of the group.
“The criminal action of these groups, who called themselves Islamists, started in 2012. The government of Mozambique already knew (of them) in 2012 and managed to contain their expansion until 2017.”
Since then, the group has carried out over 500 attacks, according to US based NGO, ACLED.
Nyusi revealed that they had not however been left untackled, as the government had put up counter attacks aimed at putting key leaders of the several terrorist attacks, to rest.
“Among the terrorists killed in combat, there are citizens of Tanzanian origin, Congolese, Somalis, Ugandans, Kenyans and mostly Mozambicans,” Nyusi revealed.
“We Mozambicans need to develop our capabilities internally. We will be the ones who will be in the first line of defence of our homeland. The government will do everything to make this process happen,”
We are intensifying international cooperation to combat terrorism,” he said, concerning the ties the country has with Portugal, the United States, France, Spain and Russia in combating the attack.