Jihadist leader responsible for Mozambique attacks has been killed, police say

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A Rwandan soldier walks in front of a burned truck near Palma, Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. Thousands of Rwandan soldiers are assisting Mozambique amid insurgency.
A Rwandan soldier walks in front of a burned truck near Palma, Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. Thousands of Rwandan soldiers are assisting Mozambique amid insurgency.
Simon WOHLFAHRT / AFP
  • The jihadist leader responsible for attacks in Mozambique has been killed, police say.
  • Insurgents had targeted a mineral-rich part of the country.
  • Tuahil Muhidim died on Saturday.


A Tanzanian jihadist leader responsible for audacious attacks in northern Mozambique has been killed, police announced Monday.

Tuahil Muhidim led a 2020 attack that captured Mocimboa da Praia, the northern port used to receive cargo for multi-billion-dollar gas projects in the region.

Police general commander Bernardino Rafael said on national radio that Mozambican and Rwandan forces shot dead Muhidim on Saturday morning.

READ | Defence minister of insurgency-hit Mozambique fired

Muhidim was also accused of kidnapping two Brazilian nuns for more than three weeks in 2020. Rafael said Muhidim had "punished" the nuns.

"Tuahil Muhidim died at 10:30 on Saturday. He had been wanted by security forces," Rafael said.

"He directed the attack on Mocimboa da Praia. He also kidnapped those two Brazilian nuns."

In the same operation, security forces shot dead another insurgent and recovered two guns, he added.

READ | Multibillion-rand plan to reconstruct insurgency-hit Cabo Delgado

"Security forces operations are having an effect. The terrorists are weakened," he said, claiming that seven insurgent leaders have been killed in the last two months.

The insurgency erupted in northern Mozambique, near the Tanzanian border, with attacks marked by beheadings and the torching of entire villages.

Since then, 3 500 people have been killed, and 820 000 have fled their homes.

Rwanda and the 16-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC) sent in some 3 000 troops about six months ago to help Mozambique quell the unrest.

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