Briefing Paper

Al Qaeda vs. Daech in the Sahel : What to Expect?

The terrorist landscape in the Sahel is characterized by multiple players that destabilize the countries in the region. Despite the fact that each terrorist group has particular areas of action and zones of influence, nevertheless two main ideological tendencies confront each other in the Sahel. On the one hand, there is Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and on the other, the Islamic State (IS) organization (also known as Daesh). Some groups, however continue to act independently of the allegiances they have pledged by refusing to follow the orders of their hierarchical leaders. Faced with this complexity of terrorist players in the Sahel, this policy brief proposes to examine the situation by discussing the system of allegiances, the relationship between the different groups, as well as the role played by state actors in their struggle against these different nebulae.