The Counter-Terrorism Committee and the 1267/1989/2253 ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee are convening a Joint Open Briefing on the evolution of the threat posed by ISIL in Africa, Member States’ responses, and continuing challenges.
Since 2014, ISIL has penetrated Africa and appears to be gaining strength with a significant footprint in multiple regions. Increased narratives target recruitment on the continent; ISIL propaganda features Africa; and attacks perpetrated by ISIL affiliates, which have caused a large number of casualties, have been trending upwards.
Key ISIL affiliates in West Africa are the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS), present mainly in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, and the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), present mainly in Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin region more generally, with ISIL presence also elsewhere, in Egypt, Libya, and Somalia in particular. ISIL’s increasing propaganda linked to attacks in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado Province is a development of significant concern. The socio-political consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have created further vulnerabilities on the African continent and further exacerbated the threat posed by ISIL. The conflict landscape is complicated by armed groups and other terrorist groups in the different regions, where success of the Taliban in Afghanistan may have also emboldened Al Qaeda-affiliated groups.
The trajectory of ISIL in Africa could have far-reaching implications for peace and security in the region and elsewhere. Coherent regional approaches are a matter of priority as well as comprehensive approaches that bring together military, criminal justice, and development efforts, among others. African States have made significant efforts. Progress has been achieved in a range of areas, including, inter alia, through the adoption of specialized legislative frameworks, regional and national military operations, criminal justice responses, efforts related to prosecution, rehabilitation and reintegration strategies, enhanced regional cooperation, and measures aiming at addressing the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism. Nevertheless, although African States recognize the importance of a comprehensive and multidimensional approach to address the root causes of the security challenges facing the continent, States’ efforts to address vulnerabilities are constrained by limited resources and capacity.
Under the Chairmanship of the Counter-Terrorism Committee and 1267/1989/2253 ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee, the joint open briefing will bring together representatives of Member States, analysts, policymakers, and representatives of civil society and researchers to examine the evolution of the threat posed by ISIL in Africa, and Member States’ responses to the threat and challenges as well as highlighting the perspectives of civil society.
The joint open briefing will take place in the Economic and Social Council Chamber, United Nations Headquarters, New York, with select speakers connecting via an online platform. Interpretation will be provided between all official UN languages.
The joint open briefing will be livestreamed at: https://media.un.org/en/webtv.
The concept note for the joint open briefing is available here:
The agenda for the joint open briefing is available here: