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North Africa and the Sahel: Terrorism intensity

This map reflects the threat posed by armed groups across the Sahel/Sahara region and beyond (east and west Africa). A number of groups – notably al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and the Somalia-based al Shabaab – continue to provide financial and material support to several smaller jihadi outfits. Established groups have transferred arms, funds and new skills to militants across the region. Boko Haram has benefited from extensive ties with Sahelian militant groups. These outfits have provided the predominantly-Nigerian jihadi group with considerable amounts of funding, weapons and training. The links between al Shabaab and al Qaeda hinge on close personal relationships formed when many members of the founding generation of Somali jihadis trained with al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Research by Maplecroft shows that ties between militant Islamist groups operating in the Sahel region and elsewhere in Africa are expected to deepen over the long term. This trend could exacerbate security risks for foreign investors.