ISIS attack in South Africa “just a matter of time” analysts warn

Analysts believe that an ISIS attack within South African borders is just a matter of time, following raised tensions caused by Donald Trump’s anti-Islamic sentiments and an increasing number of known terrorists trying to enter the county over the past 3 months.

Speaking to The Mercury on Tuesday (7 February), Institute for Security Studies (ISS) counter-terrorism researcher Martin Ewi said that the group was trying to determine exactly what business interests Trump has in South Africa, which could possibly be seen as a target.

“Trump’s very hard-line approach was good for Isis to justify its activity. What this means is that some of the reports (that we get) say (Isis) will go for Trump’s investments in South Africa.”

“It’s just a matter of whether it materialises today or tomorrow,” Ewi said.

He also noted that while Trump investments in the country would make an obvious target, he doubted that the terrorist-group had a preference as to whether they attack a Trump business or just any American-based business in South Africa.

Ewi’s concerns were echoed by the South African Muslim Network’s chairman Dr Faisal Suliman. He noted that anger and resentment for Trump by South African Muslims could be exploited by Islamic State recruiters – greatly increasing the risk of a terrorist attack occurring in the country.

South Africa had its terror-threat level upgraded in June 2016, after the US embassy issued a warning of possible terror attacks on American within South Africa’s borders.

This resulted in other embassies following suit with both Australia and England warning its citizens to stay away from densely-populated shopping malls and other high-risk areas.

However this was a brief event, and the alerts were soon revised back to ‘safe’. The UK did not actively warn citizens from travelling to South Africa.

At the time, State Security Minister David Mahlobo downplayed the terror alerts, assuring citizens that the department was doing all it could to keep South Africa safe against attacks.

Read: South African target next on Islamic State terror list: report

Must Read

Partner Content

Show comments

Trending Now

Follow Us

ISIS attack in South Africa “just a matter of time” analysts warn