Mozambique Must Tackle Armed Group That Killed 37, Amnesty Says

(Bloomberg) -- Mozambique’s authorities must take immediate action to halt militants who’ve killed at least 37 people in the southern African nation’s gas-rich north in the past two weeks, Amnesty International said.

The latest deadly attack in Cabo Delgado province occurred Wednesday night, when the militants raided a village, hacking 10 residents to death and burning houses, the London-based rights organization said Thursday in a statement. Though known as al-Shabaab among the local population, the militants have no known link to the Somali Islamist group of the same name, Amnesty said.

Mozambique’s north has been roiled by a wave of violence that began in October in Mocimboa da Praia, about 80 kilometers (49.7 miles) south of where energy companies including Eni SpA and Anadarko Petroleum Corp. plan to develop gas projects worth nearly $30 billion. Authorities blamed an initial attack on Islamist extremists but haven’t said if subsequent raids were linked.

“The Mozambican authorities must take immediate and effective action to end the killings including by reinforcing security measures to protect the lives of villagers in the region, and carrying out investigations into all the recent attacks with the aim of bringing suspected perpetrators to account,” said Deprose Muchena, Amnesty’s regional director for Southern Africa.

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