May 28, 2012
According to a former commander of the al-Shabaab organization, members of the Somali diaspora in the Netherlands, United Kingdom and United States are being actively recruited to launch attacks against these countries. The information comes from Mary Harper reporting for the BBC, who spoke to former al-Shabaab member Mohamaed Farah al Ansari. Farah al Ansari has entered a protection program with the interim government of Somalia after ceasing activities with al-Shabaab.
An offshoot of the Islamic Courts Union, al-Shabaab’s presence in Somalia consists of approximately 14,000 militants, who oppose “enemies of Islam” and combat the country’s Transitional Federal Government and the African Union Mission to Somalia.
News Agencies – October 31, 2011
The al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabab released an audiotape it said was a message from a Somali-American suicide bomber who struck an African Union base in Mogadishu this weekend, killing 10. The English-language message specifically called for terrorist attacks in Canada and said it was a duty for Muslims to fight for Islam, urging listeners not to “just sit around and be a couch potato and just chill all day.”
The message appears to be the latest attempt by Al-Shabab to incite Western youths. Canadian authorities are investigating as many as 20 Canadians who are suspected of having joined the Islamist extremist group.
News Agencies – March 23, 2011
Claude Guéant, France’s new interior minister, has been forced into expressing regret for having likened his country’s diplomatic drive for international military intervention in Libya to a “crusade”. Mr Guéant had praised Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, for having “headed the crusade to mobilise the United Nations Security Council, and then the Arab League and the African Union.”
In spite of raising hackles in the Middle East and Russia, Mr Guéant had earlier been unrepentant, telling fellow right-wingers that the modern usage of the term “crusade” did not necessarily have religious overtones. Mr Guéant was named interior minister in a cabinet reshuffle sparked by the resignation of former Foreign Minister Michele Alliot-Marie. She was discredited after taking a holiday in Tunisia over Christmas, just as a popular revolt erupted there. Nicknamed “The Cardinal” during his time as the Elysée’s secretary general, Mr Guéant was admired for his diplomatic skills. But since taking a ministerial post, he has been pilloried for his lack of tact.