Reescribe este título y tradúcelo al español: Insurgencia islamista estalla en Mozambique.

“If they knew I was a government official, they would have beheaded me,” said Tomas Langa, a civil servant in northern Mozambique, in an interview with the BBC.

Langa considers himself lucky to have escaped the jihadists. For his safety, we have changed his name.

On the morning of May 10, Langa was awoken by heavy gunfire. Looking out of his window, he saw four armed men outside his home in Macomia town in Cabo Delgado province, a region plagued by insurgency.

Terrified, he fled into the countryside and hid for three days, surviving on cassava plants.

“I was fortunate they only hurled insults at me as I ran,” he recounted.

Fighters associated with the Islamic State (IS) targeted government buildings in the town, looted shops, and wreaked havoc for two days, instilling fear and chaos in the area.

During the attack, a medical facility operated by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) was raided, with vehicles and medical supplies taken. This forced MSF to relocate its staff and suspend operations in Macomia.

Alfane Silva, a father of five, shared his harrowing experience with the BBC. He was detained and interrogated by eight gunmen, all clad in military attire and heavily armed.

“They ordered me to flee to the bush or face death if I stayed in town,” Silva recalled.

It took two days for government reinforcements to arrive, by which time the militants had left the area.

More than 700 people fled the violence in Macomia, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Those who remained, like Silva and Langa, now live in fear without access to medical facilities, electricity, and with constant apprehension of further attacks.

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The recent resurgence of violence in Cabo Delgado comes as security forces, with the support of neighboring troops, had appeared to be gaining control of the situation.

However, the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) mission, comprising soldiers from eight countries, has announced plans to withdraw its forces from Mozambique by July 15, ending its three-year mandate.

Regional security experts have expressed concerns that the timing of this withdrawal may be premature, given the ongoing instability in the region.

While some countries have already withdrawn their troops, Rwanda has pledged to send an additional 2,000 soldiers to Mozambique to bolster security.

Despite challenges faced by the Sadc mission, efforts to stabilize the situation in Mozambique continue, with the support of various international partners.

The IS-affiliated al-Shabab group in Mozambique has been a major source of conflict in Cabo Delgado since 2017, causing widespread displacement and destruction in the region.

The group’s activities have disrupted the region’s valuable natural resources, leading to economic setbacks and humanitarian crises.

While progress was made in enhancing security following the deployment of international troops, recent escalations in violence have once again plunged the region into turmoil.

The impact of these attacks has been devastating, with tens of thousands of people forced to flee their homes and seek refuge elsewhere.

As the situation in Mozambique remains volatile, neighboring countries are closely monitoring developments and taking measures to protect their borders and communities from potential threats.

Efforts to restore peace and stability in the region continue, but the road ahead is fraught with challenges and uncertainties.

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El presupuesto de defensa de Tanzania ha aumentado un 10% cada año desde 2021.

Mientras tanto, hay crecientes preocupaciones de que si la insurgencia en Cabo Delgado gana más impulso, otros países vecinos, como Malawi, podrían verse afectados si los insurgentes cruzan la frontera, según la analista Meron Elias.

Ella dijo que había algunas evidencias de que se están desarrollando vínculos regionales entre Al-Shabab en Mozambique y las Fuerzas de Defensa Aliadas, una filial del Estado Islámico que opera en la República Democrática del Congo y partes de Uganda, aunque el nivel de cooperación no está claro.

Expertos en seguridad regional dicen que las fuerzas armadas de Mozambique podrían lograr una victoria militar si se fortalecieran aún más, y que este no es el momento de retirar tropas extranjeras.

Pero la única solución a largo plazo es abordar los desafíos sociales y económicos experimentados en el norte del país, donde los estándares de vida son más bajos que en el sur, alimentando quejas de discriminación, que son explotadas por los yihadistas.

Más historias de la BBC sobre Mozambique:

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