Reaching Behind Frontlines: Promoting Exit from al-Shabaab through Communications Campaigns
This research was conducted in the context of a Somali state offensive in the Federal Member States of Hirshabelle and Galmudug that generated more territorial gains from al-Shabaab than any other military campaign since the mid-2010s. Such conditions provide fertile ground for disengagement from the insurgents, with many ex-members enrolled into the National Program for the Treatment and Handling of Disengaged Combatants. A core element of this program is its communications pillar, which seeks to promote disengagement through a variety of channels, including radio, television, social media, phone conversations, leaflets, and word-of-mouth. This research aims to inform these campaigns, drawing from interviews conducted in May 2023 with former members of al-Shabaab at the Serendi center in Mogadishu.
Suggested citation: Khalil, James, Yahye Abdi, Andrew Glazzard, Abdullahi Ahmed Nor, & Martine Zeuthen. Reaching Behind Frontlines: Promoting Exit from al-Shabaab through Communications Campaigns. Washington, DC: RESOLVE Network, 2023. https://doi.org/10.37805/lpbi2023.2.
This publication and research were produced with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Africa Bureau. RESOLVE would like to thank USAID’s Africa Bureau for its generous support for this report and RESOLVE’s Learning from Local Peacebuilding Approaches Research Initiative.
The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the RESOLVE Network, acknowledged partners contributing to the production of this publication,
the U.S. Institute of Peace, or any entity of the U.S. government.
Updated: December 18, 2023