ISIS is looking to expand pretty much anywhere and everywhere these days, and one of their latest targets is Somalia, where they’re hoping to make inroads despite from pretty major Islamist groups like al-Shabaab already established therein.
Early signs are they’re having some success, however, with Kenyan officials reporting that about 200 al-Shabaab fighters have already split from the group and pledged allegiance to ISIS. This group is operating as a de facto ISIS affiliate along Kenya’s border.
The affiliate in Afghanistan began much the same way, with ISIS recruiting disaffected Taliban in large numbers first before aiming for wholesale recruitment of the population. In that case too they’ve had some success.
Somalia might be an even bigger opportunity for ISIS, however, as the government still has little more than tentative control over the capital city, and there remains lots of ungoverned territory which could serve as a base of operations.
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