ISWAP planning to use drones for attacks – ISS


The Institute For Security Studies (ISS) has revealed that the Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) is preparing to use drones for attacks in the Lake Chad Basin.

ISS said in an attempt to strike undetected, the terrorists plan to use the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to fly improvised explosive devices (IEDs) to targeted locations in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.

It noted that the Nigerian military had inflicted losses on Boko Haram factions, Jama’atu Ahlis-Sunna Lidda’Awati Wal-Jihad (JAS) and ISWAP, forcing the latter to re-strategise.

The research, comprising analysis of propaganda materials and interviews with former combatants and associates, show an elaborate use of communication technology.

This includes satellite phones, drones, social media, high-speed printers, laptops, cameras, Wi-Fi, clip-on microphones, walkie-talkies, and data compression and archiving software.

The research found that the tools are used by ISWAP’s media team led by Abba Yusuf (aka Abu Rumaisa), son of the late Boko Haram founder, Mohammed Yusuf.

On how to curb the drone attacks, the security policy think-tank charged security agencies to sustain surveillance on supply routes through checkpoint searches which “have proved successful”.

“Those bringing in equipment and accessories should explain their destinations; collaboration among security forces in the four affected Lake Chad Basin countries can help,” it noted.

Regarding military collaborators who assist terrorists, the military was encouraged to “hold their personnel to the highest standards and use an independent ombudsman to deter corruption”.

The authorities were advised to liaise with community leaders and relevant groups to identify and disrupt networks helping terrorists.

With insurgents likely to engage in cybercrime, the research further recommended increased government investment in technology and partnership with tech companies.

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