Friday, September 27, 2019

Sahel out of control

West African and international powers are failing to tackle the spiralling threat of Islamist militancy in the Sahel region, which is spreading towards the Gulf of Guinea. Groups with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State have strengthened their foothold across the arid Sahel region this year, making large swathes of territory ungovernable and stoking ethnic violence, especially in Mali and Burkina Faso.

"Let's be clear, we are losing ground in the face of violence," the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, "I know we are all very concerned about the continuing escalation of violence in the Sahel and its expansion to the Gulf of Guinea countries."

"The risk of contagion towards other countries is there," Burkina Faso President Roch Marc Kabore said. "The G5 states [Burkina Faso, Niger, Chad, Mali and Mauritania] can't handle this situation."

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