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Kenya: Involvement of Women and Girls in Terrorism

In my most recent study I looked at different ways in which recruitment occurs to analyse the diverse motivations of women and girls to join Al-Shabaab in the coastal region of Kenya. In particular, I sought to establish the “voluntariness” of their decisions – in other words, did they sign up on their own volition?

I interviewed 36 women or girls who had returned home from terrorist camps or defected from the network. I generated 16 case accounts of women and girls who explained ‘voluntariness’ in Al-Shabaab recruitment.

The study revealed that the gender-dynamics of submission and subordination within families and the community contributes to Al-Shabaab recruitment. However, there were political and ideological motivations too.

Source: The Conversation

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