The aim of Islam in Africa Watch is to shed light on the subject of Islam and Muslims in Africa.
Islam in Africa has a very long and rich history, beginning in the seventh century. Because of its location just near the Arabian Peninsula, the cradle of Islam, Islam has penetrated the continent through warriors and merchants. The Muslims have been a very important factor in shaping Africa’s politics, economy, culture and ethnic framework.
No one knows exactly how many Muslims are in Africa. Yet, Islam is the largest religion in Africa with about 50 percent of the population being Muslims. In contrast, about 33 percent are Christians and less than 10 percent are non-religious or adherents of African religions.
Nowadays, Islam and Muslims in Africa are experiencing very significant processes which will shape the face of Islam in Muslims in Africa in the near and far future. These processes include: the struggle between Sufis and radical Muslims (Ghana, Somalia), conversion to Islam of many Africans, the peneration of radical Islam to the continent through Arab and Muslim charitable organizations based in the Arabian Peninsula, reform movements within the Sufi orders, etc.
The African Muslims in the Diaspora are also influenced from these processes and from others, which involve the issues of identity in a foreign country, turning back to the past and to the African homeland, the relationship between African Muslims who live in the Diaspora and African Muslims in Africa, etc.
Thus, this blog will monitor these and other processes by way of bringing preliminary sources in Arabic, English, French and other languages; articles on the subject, written by me; and news from around the continent, which will be updated regularly, concerning interesting issues that are happening now among African Muslims.
The administrator and writer of this blog is Dr. Moshe Terdman, who is an expert on the subject of Islam in Africa and has written a lot about this subject. He used to be a research analyst in Orient Research Group and before that, he was the director of the Islam in Africa Project as well as a senior research felow in PRISM, GLORIA Center, IDC, Herzliya. Currently, he is the director of the Think Tank for the Research of Islam and Muslims in Africa and a research fellow in the Ezri Center for Iran & Persian Gulf Studies, University of Haifa.
Dr. Terdman is available for consulting work for private, institutional and governmental entities on these issues.