Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 January 2018, 20:36 GMT

Country Reports on Terrorism 2012 - Djibouti

Publisher United States Department of State
Publication Date 30 May 2013
Cite as United States Department of State, Country Reports on Terrorism 2012 - Djibouti, 30 May 2013, available at: [accessed 18 January 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Overview: Djibouti remained an active and cooperative counterterrorism partner. Increased training for police and military members and deploying soldiers to the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) campaign was the focus of Djibouti's 2012 efforts to counter terrorism.

Legislation, Law Enforcement, and Border Security: Due to its geographic location and porous borders, counterterrorism remained a high priority for all Djiboutian law enforcement entities. Djibouti tries terrorists in criminal courts using its penal code, but in 2012, its legislature was in the process of adapting its existing laws to reflect the current terrorist threat. Djibouti's most visible counterterrorism efforts were ad hoc checkpoints within the capital city and an increased emphasis at border control points to screen for potential security threats.

Djibouti continued to process travelers on entry and departure at its international airport and seaport with the Personal Identification Secure Comparison Evaluation System (PISCES). Djibouti has not fully implemented the PISCES fingerprinting collection feature, however. While the airport and seaport are important entry points, the vast majority of travelers cross into Djibouti by land at one of three land border points, including one point on the border with Somalia. Djibouti regularly issued passports to non-citizen Somalis with close personal or business relationships to the Djiboutian government, as well as to residents of Somalia with no legal claim to Djiboutian citizenship.

Djibouti received significant counterterrorism training and equipment provided by the United States through a variety of courses and programs.

Countering Terrorist Finance: The Central Bank of Djibouti houses a Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), known as the Fraud Investigation Unit. Given its very limited resources including lack of staff, however, it is focusing on outreach to the private sector but is unable to perform the core functions of an FIU. For further information on money laundering and financial crimes, we refer you to the 2013 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR), Volume 2, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes:

Regional and International Cooperation: Djibouti is a member of the AU and has deployed troops to AMISOM. Djibouti has been supportive of UNGA resolutions related to terrorism. Djibouti hosts Camp Lemonnier, the largest U.S. military presence in Africa, which serves as headquarters to approximately 4,000 U.S. troops, including those serving with the U.S. Africa Command's Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.

Countering Radicalization and Violent Extremism: Most of the Government of Djibouti's strategic communications efforts focused on youth, a group widely-recognized as susceptible to violent extremism. In response to a growing youth violence problem, members of Parliament and representatives from the Ministry of Islamic Affairs held monthly meetings in Djibouti's low-income neighborhoods. The Ministry of Youth and Sports organized sports leagues to engage youth in positive activities. In addition, the Government of Djibouti approves themes for Friday prayer services to ensure the sermons do not incite to violence.

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