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Pietro_Mercurios
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PostPosted: 21-05-2013 07:25    Post subject: Reply with quote

When Nigerians goes to war with each other, things can get v.nasty. Sad
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 21-05-2013 11:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pietro_Mercurios wrote:
When Nigerians goes to war with each other, things can get v.nasty. Sad


Indeed. Shadowy forces may be involved in attempts to provoke a Civil War.
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PostPosted: 22-05-2013 10:30    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Boko Haram crisis Nigeria to free women
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-22618420

Boko Haram has been demanding the release of suspects

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan has ordered the release of all women held in connection with "terrorist activity", the defence ministry says.

The decision was aimed at enhancing peace efforts in Nigeria, it added.

The army is conducting an offensive in three states, where an emergency was declared last week to fight the militant Islamist group Boko Haram.

The group had set the release of women and children as a condition for talks with the government.

More than 2,000 people have died in the conflict in Nigeria since Boko Haram launched its insurgency in 2009 to create an Islamic state.

Earlier this month, it said it had abducted women and teenage girls in response to the security forces arresting the relatives of its fighters.

It said it would treat them as "slaves".

Human rights concerns
The defence ministry said a number of suspects detained for "terrorist activities" would be handed to state governments for "further rehabilitation" before being released.

"The measure, which is in line with presidential magnanimity to enhance peace efforts in the country, will result in freedom for suspects, including all women under custody," it added, in a statement.


BBC Hausa Editor Mansur Liman says the decision signals that Mr Jonathan has not shut the door to talks with Boko Haram, despite ordering a military offensive against the group.

Boko Haram will have to decide whether it wants to reciprocate by freeing the hostages it is holding and entering into talks to end the insurgency, he adds.

Mr Jonathan declared a state of emergency in three north-eastern states - Borno, Yobe and Adamawa, where Boko Haram has been most active.

Some 2,000 soldiers were deployed to the region last week, in the biggest campaign to date against Boko Haram.

The military says it has also carried out air strikes, destroying the group's bases.

US Secretary of State John Kerry has urged the Nigerian army to show restraint and not violate human rights as it pursues the militants.

Mr Kerry said there were "credible allegations" of "gross human rights violations" by the Nigerian military.

Last November, Amnesty International accused Nigeria's security forces of carrying out widespread abuses in their campaign against Boko Haram, including extra-judicial killings, enforced disappearances and torture.
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PostPosted: 25-05-2013 12:27    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigerian army 'destroys' Boko Haram camps in north-east
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-22662476

Senior officer Chris Olukolade said the camps were used to co-ordinate attacks on nearby local communities

The Nigerian army says it has destroyed a number of well-equipped camps used by the militant Islamist group, Boko Haram, in the north-east of Nigeria.

Senior officer Chris Olukolade revealed the extensive nature of the camps, which he said were used to co-ordinate attacks on nearby local communities.

The BBC has not been able to independently verify the army's claim.

Some 2,000 soldiers were deployed to the region last week, in the biggest campaign to date against Boko Haram.

On 14 May, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan gave security control to the military after declaring a state of emergency in the three north-eastern states where Boko Haram have been most active - Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.

At a news conference on Friday, Brigadier General Olukolade gave details of the military offensive, showing photos of what he said were hospital facilities and dormitories set up by the militants in the camps.

Photos included a destroyed fuel depot and what appeared to be bomb-making equipment, says the BBC's Mark Doyle.

"These camps were mini-enclaves from which the insurgents planned their operations and from there they attacked neighbouring communities, going to municipalities and returning there," Brig Gen Olukolade told the BBC.

"Most of their planning and activities was co-ordinated from these camps," he said.

Women and children 'freed'
Meanwhile, three women and six children abducted by Boko Haram have been freed, the authorities said on Friday.

According to Brig Gen Olukolade, the group were abducted on 7 May during an attack by the militants on the north-east town of Bama.

"Efforts of the troops' operation around the Sambisa forest resulted in freedom for nine of the women and children that were held hostage in that camp," he told journalists.

Two children and one woman remain missing, he added.

Those rescued from the Sambisa forest were among the kidnap victims who appeared in a recent propaganda video for Boko Haram, which featured its leader, Abubakar Shekau, the military says.

In the video, Shekau claims he is holding women and children in retaliation for the wives and children of Boko Haram militants held by the military, AFP news agency reports.

However, earlier this week President Goodluck Jonathan ordered the release of all women held in connection with "terrorist activity".

The decision was aimed at enhancing peace efforts, the defence ministry said.

More than 2,000 people have died in violence in Nigeria since Boko Haram launched its insurgency in 2009 to create an Islamic state.

The group, whose name means "Western education is forbidden", says its quest is to overthrow the Nigerian government and create an Islamic state.

There has been growing concern that Boko Haram could be receiving backing from al-Qaeda-linked militants in other countries.
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PostPosted: 05-06-2013 11:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria: Jail terms to tackle Islamist militancy
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-22779919

The move to ban Boko Haram follows an announcement by the US to pay a bounty for the capture of key terror leaders in Africa
C
Nigeria has officially banned two militant Islamist groups, warning that anyone who helps them will face a minimum jail sentence of 20 years.

President Goodluck Jonathan declared Boko Haram and Ansaru to be terrorist groups, his office said.

The army has been waging an offensive against the militants in their northern strongholds since a state of emergency was declared last month.

The insurgency has killed about 2,000 people since 2009.

The activities of both Boko Haram and Ansaru would now fall under the Terrorism Prevention Act, Mr Jonathan's office said, in a statement.

It means that "any person who knowingly, in any manner, directly or indirectly", offers support to Boko Haram and Ansaru would be jailed for "not less than 20 years" if convicted, the statement added.

Continue reading the main story
Boko Haram: Timeline of terror
2002: Founded
2009: Hundreds killed when Maiduguri police stations stormed; leader Mohammed Yusuf captured and killed
Dec 2010: Bombed Jos, killing 80 people; blamed for New Year's Eve attack on Abuja barracks
Jun-Aug 2011: Bomb attacks on Abuja police HQ and UN building
Dec 2011: Multiple bomb attacks on Christmas Day kill dozens
Jan 2012: Wave of violence across north-east Nigeria
April 2012: Deadly Easter church attack in Kaduna; ThisDay newspaper offices bombed
February 2013: French family kidnapped in Cameroon
May 2013: Heavily armed incursion into Bama town
Boko Haram: From preachers to slave raiders
On Monday, the US said it was offering rewards for information on Islamist militants in West and North Africa.

The highest reward of up to $7m (£4.6m) is for information leading to the location of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, the state department said.

Boko Haram launched the insurgency in 2009, carrying out a wave of bombings and assassinations in north and central Nigeria.

Ansaru, which is suspected to be an off-shoot of Boko Haram, joined the insurgency in 2012, taking foreigners hostage.

It said it had killed seven European and Middle Eastern nationals abducted in February 2012 in the northern Bauchi state.

Last month, Mr Jonathan declared a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states, the three main strongholds of the Islamist groups.

It led to the army launching a ground and air assault to flush out the militants.

Rights groups repeatedly accuse government troops of targeting innocent people after falsely accusing them of backing the militants.

The army denies the allegation.
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PostPosted: 19-06-2013 12:31    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria militants kill school children in Maiduguri
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-22963515

Young vigilantes in Maiduguri have been targeting suspected militants

Suspected Islamist militants in north-east Nigeria have killed at least nine school children, the second targeted attack on students in recent days.

Gunmen believed to be from the Boko Haram group opened fire on the pupils, who were in school uniform, at a school on the outskirts of Maiduguri.

Boko Haram said the attack was to punish youngsters for helping the army.

Some survivors said it was a response to the emergence of vigilante groups in the town.

North-eastern Nigeria is under a state of emergency as the government tries to defeat an Islamist insurgency.

Witness Ibrahim Mohammed said he was taking exams in a classroom at Ansarudeen School when gunmen stormed the building.

"I saw five students sitting the exams killed on the spot," he said.

"Four others were killed as they were entering the school premises."

Hospital workers confirmed that the bodies of nine children, still in their uniforms, had been taken to the mortuary in Maiduguri.

A spokesman for Boko Haram handed a message to local journalists saying that the attack was to punish youngsters for assisting the army.


The BBC's Will Ross in Lagos says vigilante groups have been springing up in Maiduguri with young men wielding metal pipes, clubs and machetes handing suspected militants over to the army.

A military spokesman said all those handed over would be given a fair hearing.

However, with hundreds of people being held in detention and few ever coming to court, there is a danger that the vigilante groups could be used to settle scores, our correspondent says.

On Sunday, a school in Damaturu was attacked by suspected Boko Haram gunmen and 13 people including students and teachers were killed.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan imposed a state of emergency on north-east Nigeria last month and thousands more troops were sent to fight the Islamist militants.

So far there is no evidence to suggest that large numbers of Boko Haram fighters have been killed, our correspondent adds.
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PostPosted: 30-06-2013 22:36    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigerian troops committing atrocities in fight against Islamic uprising - report
http://rt.com/news/nigeria-islam-atrocities-war-rights-437/

A Nigerian human rights watchdog released a report that says security forces are killing, torturing, illegally detaining and raping civilians in a fight to halt an Islamic uprising in northeast Nigeria that has killed nearly 2,000 people since 2010.

A Nigerian human rights watchdog released a report that says security forces are killing, torturing, illegally detaining and raping civilians in a fight to halt an Islamic uprising that has killed nearly 2,000 people since 2010.

The report, put out by Nigeria’s National Human Rights Commission on Sunday, said troops went on a rampage in the northeast of the country after a soldier was killed in April in the fishing village of Baga. Quoting police sources, the soldiers "started shooting indiscriminately at anybody in sight, including domestic animals.” the report said, as quoted by AP.

The retaliation left the homes of many villagers gutted and torched, with troops attempting to hide evidence of the carnage by disposing of bodies.

"The Commission equally received several credibly attested allegations of gross violations by officials of the JTF (joint task force of police and military), including allegations of summary executions, torture, arbitrary detention amounting to internment and outrages against the dignity of civilians, as well as rape," it said.


Members of the Nigerian Defence headquarter team inspecting an alleged Boko Haram base in Kirenowa (AFP Photo)Members of the Nigerian Defence headquarter team inspecting an alleged Boko Haram base in Kirenowa (AFP Photo)

Military officials said 36 people were killed, most of them “extremist fighters.” Witnesses told AP at the time that some 187 civilians were killed.

The report revealed the killings came after Islamic militants had looted a weapons depot, with subsequent reports suggesting the militants were becoming better armed and "had become both more organized and emboldened by their apparent successes, despite the enhanced security presence."

That contradicted reports that the military had taken control of the region in an emergency operation canvassing thee states, or roughly one-sixth of the country. Instead, it appears government troops have pushed the Islamic insurgents into rocky territory where it is more difficult to locate them. It is from these caves and rugged hideouts that the extremists are attacking towns and villages with regularity.

The government commission issued an interim report saying it would determine when its investigators are able to visit the conflict zone, where soldiers have cut mobile phone and internet connections. Nigeria declared a state of emergency on May 14 when extremists from the Boko Haram terrorist group took control of some towns and villages.


The suspected leader of the Nigerian Islamist group linked to Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, Imam Abu Muhammad Ibn Muhammad Abubakar Ash Shekawi, also known as Abubakar Shekau (AFP Photo)The suspected leader of the Nigerian Islamist group linked to Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, Imam Abu Muhammad Ibn Muhammad Abubakar Ash Shekawi, also known as Abubakar Shekau (AFP Photo)

The uprising poses the biggest threat in years to security in Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation, with 160 million citizens, and the continent's largest producer of oil.

Village communities trapped between the Islamic militants and security forces "reportedly live in desperate fear and destitution," the commission said.

It warned of an imminent threat to public health, as well as food shortages since many farmers have been driven from their fields.

Northeast Nigeria is the poorest region in the country, with government statistics showing 75 percent of the population lives on less than $1 a day.
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PostPosted: 06-07-2013 23:06    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria school massacre: 41 children killed, some burned alive
http://rt.com/news/school-massacre-nigeria-children-740/

School pupils play beside the burnt main auditorium of Maiduguri Experimental School, a private nursery, primary and secondary school burnt by the Islamist group Boko Haram to keep children away from school in Maiduguri, northeastern Nigeria (AFP Photo)

41 students and an English teacher have been killed in an Islamic extremist attack on a boarding school in northeast Nigeria. Some students were burned alive, according to survivors being treated for burn and gunshot wounds.

"We received 42 dead bodies of students and other staff of Government Secondary School [in] Mamudo last night. Some of them had gunshot wounds while many of them had burns and ruptured tissues," Haliru Aliyu of the Potiskum General Hospital told AFP.

Militants arrived on the scene with vessels carrying large quantities of fuel, which they used to torch the building. Those who tried to flee the burning wreckage were shot, the survivors said.

The attack on Government Secondary School in Mamudo town in the northeastern Yobe state is the latest in a series of militant attacks targeting children.

Chaotic scenes were visible at the nearby hospital which was treating victims of the attack as distressed screaming parents attempted to identify their own children through charred bodies and victims of shootings, according to AP.

A farmer named Malam Abdullahi located the bodies of two of his sons: a 10-year-old who had been shot in the back as he apparently attempted to escape, and a 12-year-old who had taken a bullet to the chest.

“That's it, I'm taking my other boys out of school,” he said tearfully. Abdullahi has three younger children who study nearby.

“It's not safe,” he said. “The gunmen are attacking schools and there is no protection for students despite all the soldiers.”

A state of emergency was declared in Yobe in May, with President Goodluck Jonathan sending thousands of troops to the region. Two other northern states, Borno and Adamawa, have had similar emergency conditions imposed on them.

The area has been targeted by the Boko Haram militant group repeatedly. The sect’s name means “western education is sacrilege.”

Since 2010, dozens of schools have been torched and over 1,600 victims murdered by extremists across the country.
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PostPosted: 09-07-2013 12:38    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Minbar Ansar Deen and Boko Haram face UK membership ban
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23228908

Nigeria's most wanted man, Abubakar Shekau, is the leader of the militant Islamist group Boko Haram

Support for two extremist groups - Minbar Ansar Deen and Boko Haram - is to be made a criminal offence in the UK.

Home Secretary Theresa May has asked for the two radical Islamist organisations to be banned under terrorism laws.

If approved by Parliament, both will be banned from operating in the UK from Friday, the Home Office said.

Minbar Ansar Deen is based in the UK, while Boko Haram operates from Nigeria.

Minbar Ansar Deen - also known as Ansar al-Sharia UK - promotes terrorism by distributing content through a forum on its website, which encourages individuals to travel overseas to engage in extremist activity, specifically fighting, according to the Home Office.

Boko Haram is a militant Islamist group based in Nigeria led by the country's most wanted man, Abubakar Shekau. Its name means "Western education is forbidden" and it has waged an insurgency for more than a decade.

If the two groups are banned, it will be illegal to support or become a member of either group, to arrange meetings or wear clothing in support of them.

Offenders could face fines of up to £5,000 or up to 10 years in prison.

'Potential threat'
The Home Office has not yet offered further information on why it is pursuing the ban of both groups.

Raffaello Pantucci, senior research fellow at the RUSI think tank, said the move indicated that the government sees them as a "potential threat".

Banning the groups would give the police powers to tackle their support networks.

The UK-based Minbar Ansar Deen's website has links to Abu Nusaybah, who was arrested after appearing on the BBC's Newsnight programme talking about Michael Adebolajo, one of the suspects in the murder of soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich.

Mr Pantucci said: "It is impossible to say that this constitutes 'a link,' but looking at the group's website they certainly seem to come from the same ideological constellation."

The activities of the Nigerian-based Boko Haram are usually confined to poor, Muslim parts of northern and central Nigeria.

Historically there is little evidence of Boko Haram targeting the UK, Mr Pantucci said.

"Britain's Nigerian community is 90% Christian," said Mr Pantucci, adding that Nigerian terror suspects in the UK were "usually Muslim converts".

However, earlier this year Boko Haram kidnapped a French family in Cameroon. A Nigerian government report revealed the group was paid more than £2m before releasing its hostages.

The Home Office's move to ban the group could indicate that it is becoming more international, "or leaning in that direction", Mr Pantucci said.

Theresa May flagged up Boko Haram, among other extremist groups, in a speech on terrorism in July 2011.

She said: "Increasingly, the threat to Britain comes not just from al-Qaeda's core leadership itself, but from these so-called al-Qaeda's affiliates in places like Yemen and North Africa... and from associated groups like al-Shabab in Somalia and Boko Haram in northern Nigeria."

A Home Office spokesman said: "The government is determined to work with the international community to tackle terrorism and take the steps necessary to keep the UK public safe.

"Proscription of these groups sends a clear message that we condemn their activities."

There are 49 international terror organisations proscribed under the Terrorism Act 2000, including al-Qaeda, al-Shabab and Islam4UK.

The latter, previously led by the radical Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary, was banned in 2010.

In Northern Ireland, 14 organisations were proscribed under previous legislation.
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PostPosted: 10-07-2013 12:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria jails 'Boko Haram' militants for life
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23245702

Nigerian police fighting Boko Haram (file photo)

Thousands of soldiers and police officers are targeting Boko Haram militants

Four alleged members of the Islamist Boko Haram group have been sentenced to life for their role in bomb attacks that killed 19 people.

They were found guilty of masterminding and carrying out attacks on an electoral commission office and a church last year.

These are the heaviest sentences given to any Boko Haram suspects.

The group is responsible for a series of deadly attacks across northern and central Nigeria.

It has increasingly targeted civilians, with more than 2,000 people killed since Boko Haram launched its insurgency in 2009 to create an Islamic state in the mainly Muslim north of Nigeria.

A state of emergency was declared on 14 May in the north-eastern states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe, with more than 2,000 soldiers deployed to break up Boko Haram camps and insurgent operations.

map
The authorities say they have arrested hundreds of militants since then but only a few have been taken to court.

The convicted men were found guilty of plotting and carrying out the 9 April 2012 attack on the electoral commission in Suleja, Niger state, killing 16 people, and a second attack on a church that killed three others in July 2012.

A fifth man was sentenced to 10 years in jail, while a sixth person was acquitted.

The UK on Monday moved to outlaw the group under anti-terror laws, with support for the group now considered a criminal offence.

The group, whose name means "Western education is forbidden", says its quest is to overthrow the Nigerian government and create an Islamic state.

It has increasingly targeted schools, with dozens burned down by Islamists since 2010.

On Sunday, 22 students of a boarding school in Yobe state were killed by suspected Islamists. Eyewitnesses said some of the students were burned alive in the school, while others were shot as they tried to escape.
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PostPosted: 25-07-2013 13:44    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria's vigilantes take on Boko Haram
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23409387

Vigilante checkpoint in Maiduguri

Vigilante groups have formed in the northern Nigerian city of Maiduguri to fight the militant Islamist group Boko Haram, a move welcomed by the military as it battles to quell the insurgency, as the BBC's Will Ross reports.

Military checkpoints have been a common sight in the northern Nigerian city of Maiduguri - the birthplace of the militant Islamist group Boko Haram - for several years.

But these days the people asking the questions at the ubiquitous roadblocks are often not in uniform.

They are civilians who are adding their muscle to the fight against Boko Haram, which is waging a military campaign to create an Islamic state across Nigeria.

More than 2,000 people have been killed since it launched an insurgency in 2009.

"When the situation became too bad to endure, we decided to find the Boko Haram members ourselves," said Mohammed, who was stopping and searching cars at one of the checkpoints.

Map locator
"Whenever we see them we arrest them and hand them over to the army. Some of us know these people," he said, adding that he and his colleagues are not paid for the work.

The vigilantes started appearing on the streets in early June, after a state of emergency was declared in May and thousands of extra troops sent to the area to wipe out the militants.

The civilian-run checkpoints have since spread across almost every district of the mainly Muslim town. They are mostly manned by teenage boys and young men in their twenties but there are also some women searching female passengers.

Mohammed said that when they detain a suspected militant, "we bring the holy Koran and then ask him to swear on it. If he's lying we are sure he will die".

'Idiotic thieves'
The vigilantes all carry crude weapons; sticks, machetes, knives and metal pipes. Considering the Islamist militants are known to be well armed you might think the vigilante members feel exposed.

A Nigerian soldiers stands beside a burnt house after the army clashed with Boko Haram insurgents in Borno state. Photo: April 2013
Boko Haram continues to stage attacks despite the state of emergency
"It is thanks to the protection of God - God is our guide whenever you do something with good intention you will definitely succeed," said Mohammed, who normally works as a lorry driver.

"If we are allowed to operate without any interference, definitely we will bring an end to this problem," he said.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

The vigilantes know the local population and can help fish out the insurgents”

Kole Shettima
Analyst
Who are Boko Haram?
Christian life in northern Nigeria
His colleague Salisu, normally a bricklayer, said that the vigilantes, and not Boko Haram, are carrying out the work of Allah.

"It is a mission for the sake of Allah.

"If we refuse to expose these irresponsible archaic hypocritical idiotic thieves, then we will face the wrath of the Koran."

The Nigerian military Joint Task Force (JTF) has welcomed the presence of the vigilantes on the streets of Maiduguri.

"These gestures are commendable as it underscores the desired positive civil-military collaboration necessary for the success of the ongoing internal security operation," said Brig-Gen Chris Olukolade just after civilians had started appearing at the roadblocks.

It is not clear if the vigilantes, also known as the civilian JTF, will later be armed with guns by the government.

Many of the soldiers deployed in northern Nigeria are from other parts of the country and do not know the Kanuri language, the most common used in Maiduguri.

'Guns in coffins'
"Without knowing the environment and the people, building confidence and establishing a presence is very difficult," said Kole Shettima, chairman of the Centre of Democracy and Development in Abuja.

Continue reading the main story
Boko Haram at a glance
Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau
Founded in 2002
Official Arabic name, Jama'atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda'awati wal-Jihad, means "People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet's Teachings and Jihad"
Initially focused on opposing Western education
Nicknamed Boko Haram, a phrase in the local Hausa language meaning, "Western education is forbidden"
Launches military operations in 2009 to create an Islamic state across Nigeria
Founding leader Mohammed Yusuf killed in same year in police custody
Succeeded by Abubakar Shekau, who is said to be well-versed in theology
Suspected to have split into rival factions in 2012
"The vigilantes know the local population and can help fish out the insurgents."

"But increased conflict between the vigilantes and Boko Haram is possible and this would further militarise the society and make it extremely difficult to see and end to the violence," he said.

"A new group of young people who may get armed could then try to get what they can out of the situation. They may themselves become a danger and mete out their own form of justice."

There are already some reports from Maiduguri of vigilantes killing people, rather than handing suspects over to the army.

In order to sidestep the tighter security presence in Maiduguri, the Islamist militants have diversified their tactics.

Earlier this month several suspected Boko Haram members disguised themselves as women.

They hid their faces behind veils and their guns beneath full-length robes.

Local reports from Maiduguri said their mission was thwarted and soldiers shot several of them dead.

In June eyewitnesses said Islamist insurgents shot dead 13 people in an apparent reprisal attack on members of a vigilante group.

They had sneaked their weapons into the area by pretending to be on their way to a burial, hiding their weapons in the coffin.

The recent attacks on schools have also proved how vulnerable the local population is. Over the past month 48 students and seven teachers have been killed in four attacks in northern Nigeria.

In a video on the internet, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said his group supported the recent attacks on schools, although he denied being behind the attack on Mamudo in Yobe State where at least 29 students were killed.

There are dangers associated with relying on vigilante groups to offer security for the population.

But as Islamist militants seem determined to attack softer targets, the vigilantes could play a vital role in trying to thwart attacks and save lives, some analysts say
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PostPosted: 29-07-2013 12:33    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nigeria vigilantes in deadly Boko Haram clashes
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23490843

Vigilante checkpoint in Maiduguri

The vigilante force has the backing of the army

At least 20 villagers in Nigeria have been killed after clashes between a vigilante force and militant Islamists, the army and vigilantes have said.

According to the pro-government vigilantes, they stormed the northern village of Dawashe on Saturday to track down militants who retaliated with heavy firepower, killing civilians.

The Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) vigilante group emerged in May.

It has pledged to help the government end Boko Haram's insurgency.

More than 2,000 people have been killed since conflict started in 2009.

map
The Boko Haram sect says it is fighting to create an Islamic state across Nigeria.

The army sees the CJTF as a proxy militia, and has given its members training, the AFP news agency reports.

Vigilante leader Aliko Musa said 25 people were killed in Dawashe in Borno state - the heartland of Boko Haram - most of them fishermen and traders.

Army spokesman Haruna Mohammed Sani confirmed that 20 people had been killed.

"The suspected sect members came armed and fired sporadic shots that killed over 20 innocent civilians," he said.

Boko Haram has not yet commented.

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan deployed the army to three north-eastern states - Borno, Yobe and Adamawa - after declaring a state of emergency in May.

Boko Haram threatened the unity of Nigeria, he said.
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PostPosted: 06-08-2013 12:24    Post subject: Reply with quote

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North Nigeria militant attacks 'kill 35'
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23577677

At least 35 people have been killed in two attacks by militants in northern Nigeria, the authorities have said.

A military statement said 32 militants, two soldiers and a police officer died in the assaults on a police station and a military base on Sunday.

An emergency was declared in Borno and two neighbouring states in May after four years of attacks by Boko Haram.

The group took up arms in 2009 to further its goal of turning northern Nigeria into an Islamic state.

More than 2,000 people have been killed since then.

The two attacks in Borno happened on Sunday, but news of them has only just emerged. Communications with the region have been difficult since the state of emergency was declared.

"Troops have successfully repelled Boko Haram terrorist attacks on a police base in Bama... on 4 August," said military spokesman Sagir Musa.

He also said a military base in the town of Malam Fatori was attacked, triggering a gun battle.

The military said "sophisticated weapons" and explosives were used in the attacks.

Boko Haram has not yet commented.
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PostPosted: 14-08-2013 13:27    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Nigeria's Boko Haram is no threat, says Abba Moro
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23689074

Thousands of extra soldiers have been sent to north-eastern Nigeria

Nigeria's interior minister has said the army is making progress in the war against Boko Haram militants, despite the killing of 44 people in a mosque.

Abba Moro dismissed the attack as "desperate" and "isolated".

"The security agencies of Nigeria have been able to push the Boko Haram sect from their major strongholds," he told the BBC's Focus on Africa programme.

Nigeria has declared an emergency in three states after thousands of deaths in militant attacks in recent years.

Boko Haram is fighting to establish an Islamic state in Nigeria's mainly Muslim north.


The mosque attack happened during dawn prayers on Sunday, although news only emerged on Monday, as communications have been disrupted by the state of emergency.

It took place in the town of Konduga, 35km (22 miles) from the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, where Boko Haram was established in 2002, launching its first attack seven years later.

Twelve further civilians were killed at Ngom village, closer to Maiduguri, reports say.

Boko Haram has not commented on the mosque attack but news of it came as a video emerged of the group's leader, Abubakar Shekau, saying his followers had carried out recent attacks including some that targeted the police and the military.

He said this showed that the army's claims to have inflicted heavy losses on the group were "lies".

It is not clear why the mosque was targeted - one explanation is that members of a local vigilante group may have been praying there.

Several such groups have been set up since the emergency was declared in Borno and two neighbouring states in May.

Boko Haram frequently attacks churches but it has also occasionally targeted mosques and preachers disagree with their views.

The attackers wore military uniforms, officials say, which they may have taken during recent attacks on a barracks.

Map showing location of Maiduguri in Borno state, Nigeria
Following a lull immediately after the emergency was declared, there has been a recent spate of attacks, blamed on Boko Haram, which have left some 160 people dead.

But Mr Moro said these were the "desperate antics" of a group trying to show it was still relevant.

Thousands of extra soldiers have been sent to the region since the state of emergency was announced.

The military cut mobile phone networks when they imposed the state of emergency, saying they wanted to make it more difficult for the militants to organise attacks.

However, some local officials have said this prevents civilians from getting help.

Analysis

Will Ross
BBC News, Lagos

If this was Boko Haram, it might appear baffling. Many churches have been bombed but why would a group that wants to impose Islamic law across Nigeria open fire on worshippers at a mosque?

In fact this would not be the first time Boko Haram has targeted a mosque - Muslim clerics have also been killed because of their views.

The gunmen may have known that amongst the worshippers were members of the vigilante groups that have sprung up to help the army defend the population.

Three months ago the military campaign was launched. But the Islamist militants have not been defeated - over the past month more than 160 people have been killed in attacks on boarding schools, army and police bases as well as a Christian-dominated area of Kano City. Other attacks go unreported. So what is the way forward?

One Borno state official suggests the only solution is to deploy more vigilante groups.
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PostPosted: 15-08-2013 11:51    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Nigerian troops 'kill Boko Haram commander Momodu Bama'
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-23704048

A poster in May showing Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, declared wanted by the Nigerian military - May 2013

Posters listing wanted militants, including Boko Haram's leader, are on display

Nigeria's military has said it has killed the second-in-command of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

His death earlier in the month had been "confirmed by other arrested terrorists", a military spokesman, Brig Gen Chris Olukolade said.

Momodu Bama, also known by his alias "Abu Saad", was a specialist in manning anti-aircraft guns, he said.

In May, Nigeria declared an emergency in three north-eastern states in order to battle the militants.

There has been no independent confirmation of Momodu Bama's death and Boko Haram has not commented on the statement.

Map showing location of Maiduguri in Borno state, Nigeria
On Tuesday, Nigeria's Interior Minister Abba Moro told the BBC that the army was making progress in its war against Boko Haram, despite the killing of 44 people in a mosque in the region on Sunday.

The attack by suspected militants took place in the town of Konduga, 35km (22 miles) from the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, where Boko Haram was first established.

Gen Olukolade, a spokesman for Nigeria's Defence Headquarters, said Momodu Bama was one of the "most-wanted" militant commanders and had a 25m naira ($155,000, £100,000) bounty on his head.

He was killed during fighting in Borno state around "the Bama corridor", he said.

Seventeen other militants, including Momodu Bama's father Abatcha Flatari - "one of the spiritual guiding lights of the outlawed terrorist group", were also killed, he said.

Another 24 fighters were arrested, his statement added.

Boko Haram is fighting to establish an Islamic state in Nigeria's mainly Muslim north.

Thousands of people have died since it began its insurgency in 2009.

Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, said in a recent video that his fighters' continuing attacks showed that the army's claims to have inflicted heavy losses on the group were "lies"
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