Warning signs from Tunisia’s localised terrorist insurgency


Tunisia has made significant progress against terrorism over the past four years. Security has been tightened throughout the country’s urban and tourist areas. Along the border with Libya, there are better surveillance systems. The scattered attacks that do occur are mostly amateurish and cause few casualties apart from the terrorists themselves.

The country does however still face a low-level insurgency along a band of mountains in north-western Tunisia by Katiba Uqba ibn Nafi (KUIN), part of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and Jund al-Khilafah (JAK), which is linked to Islamic State.

In the past nine years, at least 150 terrorists have died in the conflict, and over 300 Tunisian police and defence personnel have been killed or wounded. Some of the terrorists are foreigners, mainly Algerian, but most are Tunisian, recruited largely from the country’s west. Despite the large number of Tunisian foreign fighters in Syria and Libya, there are few indications that returnees are involved in the conflict.

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Source: Institute for Security Studiers