Jihadist fighters attacked a village in northern Mozambique near strategic gas installations on Monday evening, AFP learned from military sources in the region. It was in the same region that dozens of Mozambicans, often teenagers, were beheaded by jihadists affiliated with ISIS on November 7, of the violence that Emmanuel Macron had strongly denounced.
This time it was the municipality of Mute that was targeted, about twenty km from the Afungi peninsula, the nerve center of a project which represents one of the largest investments in Africa and in which the French group is participating in particular. Total. In early 2020, for reasons of environmental protection, Paris had ended drilling off the Scattered Islands, French islands near Mozambique.
The jihadists were targeting a deployment of soldiers in this village south of the port of Palma. The violence continued into the night. The attackers burned down dozens of houses, according to a modus operandi well known in the region struggling with this insurgency since 2017.
“After the terrorists attacked our position, reinforcements were sent to push them back,” said a military source in Palma who requested anonymity, specifying that the clashes continued on Tuesday.
A private company called in to reinforce the military
This recent attack is fueling the concerns of foreign investors for gas exploration, including Total but also the American Exxon and the Italian Eni, according to this military official.
Mute has long served as a buffer zone between natural gas installations and the strategic port for transporting infrastructure, Mocimboa da Praia, controlled by jihadists since August.
According to another military source, air reinforcements from the South African private security company Dyck Advisory Group were deployed from Pemba, capital of Cabo Delgado province, to help the military retake Mute.
The Mozambican government is regularly questioned about these jihadist attacks but generally does not comment on them. They have been gaining momentum in this province bordering Tanzania in recent months. They have already displaced more than 500,000, according to the latest government figures.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr