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Patterns of Global Terrorism: 1992

Africa Overview

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Ten international terrorist incidents occurred in Africa in 1992, up from the three incidents in 1991. However, political violence in Sub-Saharan Africa continued to be a major problem. A promising outlook in Angola seemed ready to dissipate at year's end, as the government and its main rival, the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), fell out over the results of presidential elections. Civil war in Liberia and violent anarchy in Somalia spilled over into neigboring countries. The Government of Sudan persisted in harboring representatives of Mideast terrorist groups.

Angola Four terrorist incidents occurred in 1992 in the oil-producing Angolan enclave of Cabinda. In the most serious incident, three Angolan local employees of Chevron oil were killed in December by insurgents of the Front for the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda (FLEC). FLEC had earlier attacked and set on fire buses used by Chevron to transport employees. FLEC factions also were responsible for the separate kidnappings of three Portuguese construction workers and two French citizens and their Angolan guides. FLEC seeks independence for Cabinda and has targeted Western oil companies because of commercial relations with the Luanda government.

Sudan In 1992 the Government of Sudan continued a disturbing pattern of relationships with international terrorist groups. Sudan's increasing support for radical Arab terrorist groups is directly related to the extension of National Islamic Front (NIF) influence over the Government of Sudan. Elements of the Abu Nidal organization (ANO), the Palestinian Islamic Movement (HAMAS), and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist organizations continue to find refuge in Sudan.

There is no evidence that the Government of Sudan conducted or sponsored a specific terrorist attack in the past year, and the government denies supporting any form of terrorist activity. Increasing NIF criticism of the West and Sudanese Government actions, however, such as the execution of two Sudanese US Government employees in the southern city of Juba, indicate a hardening of Sudanese attitudes that may reflect mounting sympathy to Islamic radicals and terrorists and disregard for US concerns.

Sudan continues to strengthen its ties to Iran, a leading state sponsor of terrorism. Following Iranian President Rafsanjani's December 1991 visit to Khartoum, a high-level Sudanese military delegation visited Tehran during the summer of 1992 to seek increased support for the government's campaign against insurgents in the south. Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps personnel are involved in training the NIF-controlled national militia, the Peoples Defense Forces (PDF), which is used as an adjunct to the Sudanese Armed Forces.

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