How armed groups threaten northern Mozambique

Dhe Quirimba Island in the north of Mozambique is an idyllic piece of earth: six kilometers long, two kilometers wide, washed by the Indian Ocean. The white sandy beaches and coconut trees look like something out of a travel brochure. But the impression is deceptive. The German coconut farmer Rainer Gessner said on the phone that visitors had not come for a long time. Even friends no longer dared to go to the island. “Tourism here is completely broken.” The Quirimba Archipelago is located in the province of Cabo Delgado, where terrorist groups have been spreading fear and terror for three years. Little is reported about it outside the country.

Last week, however, a report caused international horror: According to media reports, armed attackers had beheaded more than fifty young men on a soccer field in the village of Muatide in the Muidumbe district. UN Secretary General António Guterres spoke of “shocking reports of massacres, beheadings and kidnappings of women and children”. He appealed to the Moçambiquan government to investigate the atrocity and hold the perpetrators accountable.


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