A guerrilla war in northern Mozambique has seen Russian private military company the Wagner Group tasked with taking the initiative from a committed jihadist force. But it has not gone well, as Al J Venter explains.
Despite having total air supremacy, mobility on the ground, excellent communications and access to a range of sophisticated hardware – including drones and some of the best squad weapons on the planet – a sophisticated Russian mercenary force has been driven out of northern Mozambique after only months of mixing it with a tough jihadist force that has Somali roots. It goes much further. A confidential report by a senior United Nations official who has served in Afghanistan, both Sudans, Yemen and elsewhere, and who has communicated directly with this writer, suggested that by moving into northern Mozambique in force, the so-called Islamic State (IS) is only a step away from becoming fully active in South Africa. He said: “This radical movement already has a strong presence that includes military training bases.”