DJIBOUTI. Djibouti City: Leader of Alshabaab militant group Ahmed Diriye had called for attacks on French and American interests in Djibouti on March 27.
In a video message, Diriye also known as Ahmed Umar Abu Ubaidah accused the Djibouti president Ismail Omar Guelleh of turning the country into a foreign military base.
“Make American and French interest the highest priority,” he said.
The African country will hold elections on April 9 this year and Guelleh will be seeking a fifth term. Current President Guelleh has been ruling the country since 1999.
Djibouti has been a military base for most nations as it is a strategic gateway to the Arab and Africa peninsula.
France has 1,500 troops and the US has over 4000 troops in Djibouti. Japan, Italy and, China also have military bases in the nation. The African Union also use Djibouti as a base for its troops fighting Alshabaab in Somalia.
The Islamic extremist group accuses France of helping the persecution of Muslims in the Central African Republic. It also provides military assistance to the troops. Islam is the official religion in the country.
In 2014, a suicide attack killed a Turkish national in a Djibouti restaurant. It injured six Dutch, seven French, four German, and three Spanish nationals. Al Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack. They have alleged that the place was popular with ‘French crusaders and their National Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)’ allies.