Image: August 31, 2015 photo of an al Shabaab brigade tweeted from an Islamic State affiliated Twitter account. Tweet describes the photo as Mujahideen of East Africa.Al Shabaab (Arabic for “the youth”), an Islamic militant group that seeks to create an Islamic state in Somalia, formed in 2004 as the militant wing of the Islamic Courts Union (ICU), a network of Islamist militant tribes that controlled southern and central Somalia. Al Shabaab has waged an insurgency against Somalia’s transitional governments and its Ethiopian supporters since the ICU lost power in December 2006. Fighting between Al Shabaab and Somali government forces have flared since May 2009.Targets: Inside and Outside SomaliaAlthough the group primarily targets Somali governmental officials and Ethiopian military forces, it has also conducted attacks against African Union Mission forces and international peacekeepers inside Somalia. Since the U.S. designated Al Shabaab a Foreign Terrorist Organization in…
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Groups and individuals included in TRAC's database range from actual perpetrators of social or political violence to more passive groups that support or condone (perhaps unwittingly) such violence. The spectrum of violence represented by these groups is vast, from Jihadists who bomb train stations to financial institutions that transfer funds. Some groups that originally engaged in violence but have since become legitimate political parties are included to provide historical perspective. TRAC is in no way attempting to determine whether groups or individuals are terrorists -- only to convey reported information about their activities and official State status. While TRAC attempts to ensure the accuracy of its TRAC database, the entries in the database are from numerous different sources. Hence, TRAC cannot and does not warrant the accuracy of the entries in its database. The editors of TRAC may modify these entries at any time and welcome comments and suggested corrections or additions. Please write [email protected] or hit the "SUBMIT ADDITIONS" button on the page of the group profile about which you wish to comment.