New concerns have begun to rise following new sightings of terrorist activities in the Boukani region of the Northeastern Ivory Coast after an ambush attack in Tehini department. A security patrol was hit by an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) at Gogo-Govitani in Zanzan district on 22 October 2021,  just a few days after intermittent gunshots were reported on 19 October 2021 in the location following confrontations and push back operations against an armed group by the Ivorian army.

This series of events occurred barely two weeks after a security post was attacked by an Unidentified Armed Group at the other end of the Western Ivory Coast in the Duekoue region of Montagnes district where some officers were injured.

As it stands, Gardaworld reports that there is a heightened terrorism threat in northern Cote d’Ivoire. Militants operating in the wider Sahel region are active in Zanzan district and have demonstrated an intent to target the country in March, April, and June 2021. The groups’ drive for terror in Zanzan has been seen with a bomb explosion targeting a security outpost near Tehini on June 12 and attacks against the military in Kafolo and Tehini in late March.

These new anxieties are not a result of an overreaction but in a bid to highlight the growing occurrences of terrorist attacks in Zanzan and Savane districts bordering Mali and Burkina Faso and its repercussions on the general security of Ivory Coast. Two customs posts located in the north were attacked by unknown militants between 19-20 May 2021. In addition, two attacks were recorded within a week in June 2021, a soldier died of his wounds on 7 June 2021 after an attack by armed men in Tougbo, an area bordering Burkina Faso and on 12 June 2021, three Ivorian soldiers were killed and four others injured when their vehicle hit an explosive device on the Tehini-Togolakaye road in a border town with Burkina Faso.

After the attack earlier this week, the Ivorian government has responded to these threats by launching routine patrols in the area.. We cannot overlook the impact of the ongoing conflict in Mali and Burkina Faso while examining possible solutions to the insecurity in these regions of the country as the states share a common border.

Therefore, these recent developments drive home a consciousness of the need to re-strategize and promulgate effective policies, countermeasures and military exercises which will ensure total security in the border regions and prevent further internal or external aggression.