A section of Al Shabaab fighters led by Sheikh Muumin split from the parent jihadist and Al Qaeda branch in Somalia, pledged fealty to Islamic State self-proclaimed caliph Abu Bakr al Baghdadi.
Facing by rivalry, Al Shabaab top leadership announces that group will not tolerate individuals destined to cause disunity in the terror group.
Al Shabaab Amniyaat wing ordered to hunted down the pro-ISIS splinter which has seen several top commanders who were aligning with ISIS executed alongside several other fighters.
ASSESSMENT & ANALYSIS
Al Shabaab strength and military capability is dwindling though the Somali based jihadist group remains a huge threat t o security of horn of Africa national and broader East African countries peace.
According to a senior American military official for east Africa, the threat of ISIS is also believed to have grown since 2014 and according to a report from Marine Corps general.
Conflict in Yemen has caused some spillover in Somalia but Al Shabaab militancy from Somalia now faced with rivalry withing its folds continues to poses security threat in Somalia and to her immediate neighbour Kenya.
Al Shabaab is likely to conduct surprises attacks to prove to parent jihadist group Al Qaeda that it is still in hold in Somalia and in East Africa through designated terror units such as Al Hijra and Al Muhajiroun the Emigrants of East Africa that has vowed to stick with Al Qaeda.
ISIS splinter on the other hand which has received top commanders notably, Al Shabaab Lower Juba Commander, Mohamed Kuno Gamadheere.
Gamadheere commands about 1,200 Al Shabaab militants including Jaysh Ayman unit that hides in Kenya’s Boni forest.
To prove presence to their masters that pro-ISIS in Somalia is a offshoot to reckon with, the splinter faction poses even much greater threat to security of Somalia populous as well as Kenya that is also a major target of the jihadist groups due to contributing AMISOM peacekeeping troops in Somalia.
There is also a possibility that Mohamed Kuno may take the mantle of pro-ISIS leadership in Kenya citing he was the architect behind Garissa University attacks.
Kenya’s Intelligence Service warns of Mohamed Kuno insurgence and urges members of public to be on the look out.
Sharing of information/intelligence with security authorities to preempt any possible threat.
So far the Kenya government ordered the closure of quarries close to Somalia border in Mandera NEP citing they are prone to attacks.
Also intelligence reported a plot to attack quarry miners in that region prompting government to issue an order for quarry workers to vacate those areas.
Security presence has been heightened along the porous border with Somalia amid reports of killing of intelligence and police informants in NEP.
Kenya Defence Forces in Somalia and Ethiopian Forces combined forces with Somalia National Army to liberate the cities of the Jubba river valley, a locality which was under Al Shabaab control for eight years.
Dislodging of militant from the key cities deprived Al Shabaab of revenue from the area and in turn freed up legitimate commerce for Somali citizenry.
Apart fighting between AlShabaab’s competing factions adds another layer of complexity to Somalia’s security environment.
Somalia has been face by major clan clashes between between Puntland and Galmudug in Galkayo which has left over 40 dead and displacing an estimated 40,000 people.