ISIS’s West African Offshoot Is Following al Qaeda’s Rules for Success
Now that Islamic State has been defeated in Syria, analysts are warning about the rise of Jihadist groups in West Africa. One of the most successful organizations in the region is an off-shoot of ISIS known as the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).
ISWAP is mainly active in the northeastern part of Nigeria, where it has been gaining ground over the past 5 months, although it has occasionally crossed the border into Chad as well. While the group shares the ideology of ISIS, it operates more like al-Qaeda in the sense that it lacks a clearly defined, hierarchical leadership and it actively works toward establishing ties with local communities. This approach has made it incredibly tough for Nigeria to effectively challenge ISWAP’s rise.