The Boko Haram sect members are known as a terrorists all over the world. They carry out series of carnage, radical Islam propaganda and vehemently hate everything relating to the Western ideology and democracy. The began its activities in North-eastern part of Nigeria, though the group has now spread into Niger, Chad and Cameroon. What else do we know?
What is Boko Haram?
Boko Haram is a terrorist group operating majorly in the North-Eastern and some other parts of Nigeria.The group also has cells in some parts of Niger, Cameroon and Chad.
In addition to the prohibition of Western education, the group also stands against Western democracy and the principle of separation of powers, the secular character of the state, as well as wearing Western clothing and using other elements of modern Western culture.
From the point of view of Boko Haram, the ideal political organization of society is a state based on strict adherence to Shariah law, and the legislative, executive and judicial power of which is exercised at the local Sharia courts formed by authoritative and enlightened interpreters of Islam.
Brief history of Boko Haram in Nigeria
The founding date Boko Haram is considered to be 2002, and it is associated with the activities its slain leader Islamic preacher of the radical wing Abu Yusuf Mohammed Yusuf.
Being a charismatic religious leader, Yusuf gathered the young supporters of radical Islam and began to call for the proclamation of a Sharia state on the territory of Nigeria and to ban Western education as well as the intensification of the fight against corruption. From Borno state, the movement soon spread to the neighboring states, Yobe and Adamawa and to many other parts of Northern Nigeria.
In July 2009, clashes between the group and police in the capital of Borno state Maiduguri, Bauchi and Kano developed into armed confrontations during which more than 800 people died (mostly supporters of Boko Haram). The leaders of the sect including Mohammed Yusuf were arrested, Yusuf was later killed by the Police.
Regular targets of Boko Haram attacks are secular schools and other educational institutions; churches, missions of Western countries as well as crowded places, such as markets, bus stations, etc.The militia elements sometimes resort to hostage-taking for ransom.
In June 2013 Nigerian government recognized Boko Haram as a terrorist organization and banned its activities. This was followed by the UK government in July 2013, USA in November 2013 and Canada in December 2013. On May 22, 2014, Boko Haram was declared a terrorist organization by the UN Security Council.
Connection with the terrorist world and financing
Source of funding of the organization are robberies, including banks, and ransom for hostages. It is alleged that the group is also being funded by international terrorist organizations, including al-Qaeda.
Boko Haram maintains contact with other international terrorist organizations such as al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, Al-Shabab, Taliban and so on. Many of its fighters were trained in camps in Afghanistan and participated in combat operations in Somalia, Mali.
Rise of Boko Haram in Nigeria
Since the beginning of 2014 insurgencies of Boko Haram has intensified, as well as its terrorist activities. In a series of military operations, the militants managed to seize some areas in Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa.
These terrorists often carry out massacres of civilians, including women and children. Children are also often used by terrorists as bombers in the terrorist attacks and sometimes as human shields. The actions of the group have also spread into neighboring Cameroon, Niger and Chad.
International efforts to combat Boko Haram in Nigeria
Upon an initiative of former French President Francois Hollande on 17 may 2014 in Paris a mini-summit"with the participation of heads of five states was held. Precisely, Benin, Cameroon, Nigeria, Niger, Chad, and representatives of USA, UK, and EU attended this summit.
The meeting participants agreed on a common plan of action against the terrorits, including the coordination of intelligence, information-sharing, the central management of resources, monitoring of borders, military presence around Lake Chad and the possibility of intervention at the slightest danger.
In January 16, 2015, in response to the call by Cameroon authorities as it was being attacked by Boko Haram, the Chadian army swung into action to assist the Cameroonian army, 400 units of military transport vehicles from N'Djamena were moved into Cameroon, pushing the terrorists out of Cameroon. The Chadian army units continued military operations on the territory of Nigeria, together with the armed forces of the coalition partners.
By April, coalition troops were able to achieve success in the fight against the group and to release most of the territories in the North-East of Nigeria from the militants. On July 27, 2015, the representatives of the Nigerian army had stated that Borno state was entirely under their control,
On October 14, 2015, in response to the frequent terrorist attacks in North Cameroon, the U.S. government authorized the shipment of 300 troops to assist Cameroonian army in repelling the aggression of the terrorists. The main task of American soldiers in Cameroon was to conduct exploration operations.
On August 23, 2016, the Nigerian armed forces stated that during a combat operation against Boko Haram, its leader Abubakar Shekau was fatally wounded, later this information was confirmed.
The struggle for leadership and the rumors about a possible split
The competition for leadership in the group between Shekau and Abu Mus'ab al-Barnawi, who is openly supported by ISIS, has caused rumors of a possible split of Boko Haram into two factions. In particular, al-Barnawi urged the rebels to abandon attacks on fellow Muslims and to concentrate on combat against soldiers involved in the anti-terrorist operation, Christians and citizens of the Western countries.
In turn, on January 12, 2017, at a meeting of UNSC, the assistant to the UN Secretary-General on political affairs Taye-Brook Zerikhun confirmed that since October 2016 cases of extremists attacks on military facilities and security forces had become more frequent. At the same time, extremists didn't refuse the traditional tactics of terror against civilians, carrying out the double terrorist attack in the city market in Madagali on December 9, 57 people died from two explosions).
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