Suicide attacks are a brutally effective terror tactic, irrespective of when, where or how they are executed. In Africa, the US Embassy attacks in Nairobi and Dar es-Salaam in 1998 were the first, before AQLIM, al-Shabaab and Boko Haram became household names in counter-terrorism circles. This guide hopes to shed light on the application of this tactic in Africa. From those behind the attacks to those more frequently targeted, or the most used delivery method, this publication was written with practitioners and policy makers in mind. By understanding the application of suicide attacks in the past, and identifying how and where people are being recruited, the aim of this guide is to assist practitioners and policy makers to initiate pro-active strategies in preventing future attacks.
Report by Anneli Botha, Institute for Security Studies