Islamist insurgents have seized management of a key city in northern Mozambique, near the place overseas firms are engaged on a $60bn (£52bn) pure gasoline challenge.
The militants staged an in a single day assault on Mocimboa de Praia, taking a navy base and elevating their flag, police stated.
The military and police have launched a counter-offensive, police added.
This is the primary time Mozambican jihadists have attacked a serious city.
They often assault villages and farms.
Panicked residents stated the fighters had blocked all exit routes, and so they couldn’t depart the city.
“They are taking residents to the mosque and locking them there,” the privately owned Moz24h web site quoted a resident as saying.
Hundreds have been killed and 1000’s displaced in the course of the three-year insurgency in Cabo Delgado.
The authorities has battled to curb the insurgency, regardless of assist from a Russian navy firm.
The militants name themselves al-Shabab though it’s unclear whether or not they’re linked to the considerably bigger Somali motion of the identical identify.
Cabo Delgado is one among Mozambique’s poorest areas, however it’s wealthy in untapped mineral assets.
In 2010, Mozambique found enormous gasoline reserves in Rovuma Basin, off the Indian Ocean coast of Cabo Delgado.
Last October, ExxonMobil unveiled plans to take a position greater than $500m within the preliminary building part of its gasoline challenge within the area.