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Mozambique puts 200 suspected jihadists on trial

Almost 200 people have gone on trial in northern Mozambique accused of belonging to an Islamist militant group which has killed more than 200 people over the last year.

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Most of the accused are from Mozambique, but they also include people from Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia and Burundi.

A tent was set up as a makeshift courtroom inside the prison in the Mozambican port town of Pemba.

The 189 suspects, including more than 40 women, are accused of belonging to a jihadist group which started attacking police stations a year ago and since then has killed more than 200 people – most of them in remote villages of Cabo Delgado province.

Further up the east African coast, the militant group, al-Shabab, has been under pressure in Somalia, Kenya and Tanzania.

Some of its fighters have fled south and are reported to have reached out to build relationships with jihadists in the largely Muslim north of Mozambique.

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