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Africa Subsaharan
At Least Five Dead in Nigeria Suicide Attacks
2017-01-17
[AnNahar] At least two people were killed in a suspected suicide kaboom on a university campus in northeast Nigeria
... a particularly crimson stretch of Islam's bloody border...
, a local resident, a lecturer and emergency services told AFP on Monday.

The blast happened at 5:25 am (0425 GMT) at a mosque in the staff quarters area of the University of Maiduguri and is thought to have been carried out by a teenage girl.

Suspicion will likely fall on the Islamist group Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
, which has repeatedly used young women and girls as human bombs to target worshippers.

There were reports locally of a separate kaboom but details were not immediately available.

"At exactly 5:25 am, while I was leaving the mosque in my neighbourhood, I heard two kabooms," said one local resident, who asked not to be identified. "I rushed to the university, which is not far from my house. On entering, I saw the mosque in a mess. Three people lay dead, including a maiden, whose body was badly mutilated.

"Thirteen other worshippers were maimed."

A university lecturer who lives on site confirmed the resident's account.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) tweeted: "A #bomb went kaboom! at the #mosque at the University of #Maiduguri during early morning prayers. Rescue operations ongoing..."

Access to the university campus has been strictly controlled, with checkpoints and searches at the gates. But the site, on one of the main thoroughfares leading in to and out of the city, is vast and most areas are badly lit.
Ynet has more:
Witnesses say two bombs have went kaboom! at Nigeria's northeastern University of Maiduguri, killing five people.

One student said the first blast destroyed the mosque where professors were saying dawn prayers and many are feared among the victims. A university worker said the second bomb went off at an entrance gate. Both spoke on condition of anonymity for their safety.

Police front man Victor Isuku confirmed Monday's kabooms but said rescuers are still ferrying the maimed to hospitals and evacuating bodies, making it difficult to give a toll.

Maiduguri has been attacked many times but this is the first attack on the university blamed on Boko Haram.
Update from Ynet at 6:50 p.m. ET:
Boko Haram has said it was behind Monday's twin suicide kaboom at a university in north eastern Nigeria which killed two people.

A video featuring an audio recording purporting to be leader Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fired by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
was posted on social media late on Monday. Rooters was unable to verify if the voice was indeed his.

"The bomb that went kaboom! on Monday morning, it's our brothers responsible for it," the recording said.

A professor at the University of Maiduguri and a child were killed and 17 people maimed in a twin suicide kaboom, officials said on the day of the attack.
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Africa Subsaharan
Boko Haram leader says violent campaign continues
2017-01-01
[M.STARTRIBUNE] Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
's leader has declared in a new video that he is alive, denying Nigerian government claims that his Islamic Lion of Islam group has been crushed.

President Muhammadu Buhari said last week that soldiers had driven Boko Haram from its last forest enclave in the northeast, boasting "the bully boyz are on the run, and no longer have a place to hide."

In a video posted on YouTube, Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fire by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
announced: "I am here, well and alive" and that "the battle is just beginning." He urged his followers, in graphic terms, to continue the campaign.

Nigeria's military has claimed to have killed Shekau at least three times, and earlier this year declared he had been fatally maimed. This week, the army said it seized Shekau's Koran in the Sambisa Forest assault -- wanting to indicate he was on the run.

Each time such claims are made, the Boko Haram leader reappears in a video to mock them.

In the latest, posted on YouTube on Dec. 29, he reiterates that "our mission is to establish an Islamic caliphate" in Nigeria -- whose 180 million people are divided almost equally between mainly Moslems in the north and a predominantly Christian south.

In the video, Shekau does not mention some 200 schoolgirls kidnapped from a school in Chibok town who were believed to be held in the Sambisa Forest.

Nigeria is unlikely to see an end soon to the deadly suicide kabooms, village attacks and assaults on remote military outposts in northeastern Nigeria. The Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
group, to which one faction of Boko Haram belongs, announced an attack on an army barracks "killed and maimed many" soldiers on Dec. 22 -- the same day the army said it seized the forest hideout.

Already, there are reports that the holy warriors have been regrouping south of their northeastern stronghold.
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Africa Subsaharan
Boko Haram leader sez 'tis but a flesh wound
2016-12-30
Note the plastic mag the Bad Guy has in his trusty rusty AK
[AlManar] Boko Haram’s elusive leader Abubakar Shekau appeared in a new video on Thursday to dispute a claim that the Takfiri group had been routed from its Sambisa Forest stronghold.

“We are safe. We have not been flushed out of anywhere. And tactics and strategies cannot reveal our location except if Allah wills by his decree,” Shekau said in the 25-minute video, flanked by masked armed militants.

“You should not be telling lies to the people,” he said, referring to Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari who said on Christmas Eve that the extremist group had been defeated and driven away from the forest, its last known bastion.

“If you indeed crushed us, how can you see me like this? How many times have you killed us in your bogus death?” he asked.

It was not immediately clear where the new video was shot, but Shekau who spoke in both Hausa and Arabic said it was filmed on Christmas Day.

Shekau last appeared in a video in September where he disputed a claim by the Nigerian military that he had been wounded in battle.

He vowed to continue fighting on until a so-called “Islamic state” was imposed in northern Nigeria.

“Our aim is to establish an Islamic Caliphate and we have our own Caliphate, we are not part of Nigeria.”

Buhari had announced that a months-long military campaign in the 1,300 square-kilometer (500 square-mile) forest in northeastern Borno state had led to the “final crushing of Boko Haram terrorists in their last enclave in Sambisa Forest”.
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Africa Subsaharan
Nigeria's army says 3,000 people who fled Boko Haram return to hometown
2016-12-28
[AlAhram] More than 3,000 people in northeast Nigeria
... a particularly crimson stretch of Islam's bloody border...
who were forced to flee the seven-year insurgency waged by Islamist forces of Evil have returned to their hometown following the reopening of major roads in the area, the army said on Tuesday.

Damasak - in the northwest of Borno, the state worst hit by the forces of Evil - was taken over by Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
in late 2014, when it controlled an area the size of Belgium in northeast Nigeria. The bandidos bully boys were pushed out of the town by the army in July.

President Muhammadu Buhari said on Saturday that the army had taken back Boko Haram's main camp in the Sambisa forest.

On Sunday, the government said it was reopening two roads between Borno's capital, Maiduguri, and the northern towns of Damasak and Baga.

Army front man Sani Usman said more than 3,000 people used one of the roads to return to Damasak on Monday.

Rooters was unable to independently verify his statement.

"They were residents of Damasak displaced by the insurgency staying as refugees in the neighbouring Niger Republic and internally displaced people in Maiduguri," he said.

Usman said the returnees went through military security checks when they arrived and were met by local government officials and community leaders.

After the announcement that the Sambisa camp had been taken, the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, said the former game reserve would be used as a military training base to prevent the bandidos bully boys returning.

Security analysts say Boko Haram split this year with one faction led by Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fire by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
operating from the Sambisa forest and the other, allied to Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
(IS) Death Eater group and led by Abu Musab al-Barnawi, based in the Lake Chad region.
Link


Africa Subsaharan
Buhari: Last Boko Haram base taken in Sambisa Forest
2016-12-25
[Al Jazeera] Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari says the army has seized one of Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
's last bases in northeastern Borno state.

If confirmed, the claim would mark a key stage in the government's months-long offensive against the gang.

A long campaign in the 1,300sq km forest in Borno led to the "final crushing of Boko Haram snuffies in their last enclave in Sambisa Forest" on Friday, Buhari said in a statement on Saturday.

He congratulated his troops for "finally entering and crushing the remnants of the Boko Haram Death Eaters at 'Camp Zero', which is located deep within the heart of Sambisa Forest".

"The snuffies are on the run, and no longer have a place to hide. I urge you to maintain the tempo by pursuing them and bringing them to justice," he said.

Daily Telegraph Adds Details

The Nigerian army has defeated Boko Haram in the Sambisa forest, one of the jihadists' last remaining strongholds, President Muhammadu Buhari said Saturday. A campaign lasting for months in the 1,300 square-kilometre forest in northeastern Borno state led to the "final crushing of Boko Haram terrorists in their last enclave in Sambisa Forest" on Friday, Buhari said in a statement.

He congratulated his troops for "finally entering and crushing the remnants of the Boko Haram insurgents at 'Camp Zero', which is located deep within the heart of Sambisa Forest".

"The terrorists are on the run, and no longer have a place to hide. I urge you to maintain the tempo by pursuing them and bringing them to justice," he said.

The statement made no mention of the whereabouts of Abubakar Shekau, the leader of the Boko Haram faction based in the forest.
He's fleeing...
The military has said in the last few days that Boko Haram fighters are running away from the forest into surrounding areas and people have been told to be vigilant.

Boko Haram has killed more than 15,000 people, displaced over two million and kidnapped hundreds of men, women and children during a seven-year insurgency aimed at creating an Islamic state.
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Africa Subsaharan
Boko Haram overruns Nigerian military base in northeast
2016-10-20
[AlAhram] Nigeria's Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
Islamic murderous Moslems have overrun a remote military camp in the northeast, leaving 13 soldiers maimed and an unknown number missing, the army said Wednesday.

Monday's attack comes a week after one faction of Boko Haram released 21 of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped from northeastern Chibok town, and as Nigeria's government is negotiating for the release of another 83 of the girls kidnapped 2½ years ago.

The attack on Gashigar, on the border with Niger, is the third reported attack on the military after months of a lull during which the Islamic murderous Moslems hit soft civilian targets.

Army front man Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman called the attack a "temporary setback" committed by "remnants of Boko Haram" that forced the soldiers to retreat.

An operation is in progress to find the missing troopers and "clear the Boko Haram bully boyz at the general area," his statement said.

It is believed the attack is by a splinter from Boko Haram that calls itself the West Africa Province of the Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
The IS group named a new caliph of its only franchise in sub-Saharan Africa in August, provoking a struggle with Boko Haram's longtime leader Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fire by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
A battle of words on social media indicated the dispute is over Shekau's indiscriminate killing of Moslems.

The group loyal to Shekau negotiated -- with the Swiss government and International Committee of the Red Thingy acting as intermediaries for Nigeria's government -- last Thursday's release of 21 Chibok girls, the first such negotiated settlement.
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Africa Subsaharan
Boko Haram faction claims to kill 40 troops in Nigeria town, army claims victory
2016-09-22
[Ynet] Nigeria's army claimed victory Wednesday in "a fierce battle" in a remote desert trading post where Islamic bully boyz said they killed 40 troops from a multinational force.

Army front man Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman said troops recaptured Malam Fatori town on Tuesday and killed several bully boys. But the forces of Evil regrouped at the nearby border with Niger and attacked again Wednesday. "The operation is continuing," Usman said.

ISIS's West Africa Province, one faction of the Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
bully boy group, claimed it had annihilated "a convoy of the African Coalition Crusader forces" at Malam Fatori, killing more than 40 soldiers, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors bully boy communiques.
It sounds like Abu Musab al-Barnawi's faction is getting busy. He's the one who recently stole Boko Haram from previous leader Abubakar Shekau, promising a kinder, gentler Boko Haram that will attack infidel churches and army targets instead of killing and kidnapping fellow Muslims.
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Africa Subsaharan
Nigeria ready to 'swap' Boko Haram prisoners for Chibok girls
2016-09-17
Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, is prepared to swap Boko Haram prisoners for the Chibok schoolgirls, a minister has said.

Last year the government almost secured the release of the girls whose kidnapping triggered global outrage, but three times the negotiations collapsed. On the first occasion, in August, Buhari had agreed to the prisoner swap and the militants were taken to Maiduguri, the city Boko Haram regards as its spiritual home.

“All things were in place for the swap which was mutually agreed,” Lai Mohammed, the information minister, said in a statement. “Expectations were high. Unfortunately, after more than two weeks of negotiation and bargains, the group, just at the dying moments, issued a new set of demands never bargained for or discussed by the group before the movement to Maiduguri. All this while, the security agencies waited patiently. This development stalled what would have been the first release process of the Chibok girls.”
Sounds like terrorist negotiation 101...
The recent battle for the leadership of the group that has murdered, raped and kidnapped thousands of people and displaced millions has been a major setback in negotiations, he said. Islamic State, of which Boko Haram is an affiliate, announced last month that Abu Musab al-Barnawi was its new leader, replacing Abubakar Shekau – something analysts say may have been a reaction to the many Muslims murdered under his tenure.

However Shekau later claimed still to be in control of the group and a video released of the Chibok girls seemed to have come from his camp. “The current division among members of the terrorist group ... has seriously affected efforts to release the girls,” Mohammed said.

In an interview with the Guardian, Mohammed said that the government was now sure it was negotiating with the right people. The previous government under Goodluck Jonathan conducted high-level negotiations before realising that they were talking to charlatans.

“We are confident that we have a grasp of the divisions in the group, so when there have been setbacks in the negotiations we have known why,” he said. “We can’t put any sort of time on [their release]. The thing is we are dealing with a group that can change the goalposts at any time. It is and has been a really tricky situation,” Mohammed said.

He added that negotiations under Jonathan did not start until a year after the 276 girls were captured from a school in Chibok, north-east Nigeria, making it more difficult for Buhari. “It’s been a very testy matter because these divisions in Boko Haram are constantly shifting. But we inherited this situation and we are concentrating on rescuing the girls.”

Buhari’s government was thought to be attempting to rescue the girls. The army had launched air strikes on Boko Haram strongholds and claimed to have wounded its leader.

The Chibok girls represent just a fraction of the thousands of abductees – of all ages and genders – that Boko Haram has taken since its rise in 2009. In areas of northern Nigeria that the army wrested back from the terrorist group, millions of victims of malnutrition, neglect and in some cases famine are surfacing, presenting a humanitarian crisis on a scale that humanitarian workers are warning has never been seen before.
Link


Africa Subsaharan
ISIS' decision to oust notorious Boko Haram leader is tearing group apart
2016-09-17
[FOXNEWS] The Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
’s decision to oust the leader of Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
-- who had a penchant for using children as jacket wallahs ‐ is fracturing the Nigerian terror group as bloodthirsty holy warriors are divided amid a new push to attack Christian communities.
And you thought it was impossible to make ISIS gag!
The self-proclaimed caliphate announced in August that Musab al-Barnawi will be the Nigerian group’s new "governor" after Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fire by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
, its notorious former leader, apparently became too much for ISIS leadership in the Middle East, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Barnawi, rumored to be a son of the group’s founder, reportedly told ISIS’ newspaper that jihadists should shift their focus to Nigeria’s Christians, in a bid to win over public support after Shekau spent years attacking Moslem villages that didn’t join Boko Haram’s ranks.

The group, an ISIS affiliate, should be "booby-trapping and blowing up every church that we are able to reach, and killing all those we find from the citizens of the cross," Barnawi told the newspaper, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Such a move could exploit existing tensions in Nigerian communities with split Moslem and Christian populations, the newspaper added.

Under Shekau ‐ who took control of the group in 2009 ‐ Moslem civilians became the majority of the casualties in the violence, with holy warriors frequently enlisting children to carry out suicide kabooms.

"You can’t really be more barbaric and more savage than Shekau," Issoufou Yahaya, a political analyst and head of the history department at the Niamey University in Niger, told The Wall Street Journal. "He’s the pinnacle of barbarism."

But Shekau has not recognized Barnawi’s appointment, accusing him of apostasy and saying that ISIS’ leader, His Supreme Immensity, Caliph of the Faithful and Galactic Overlord, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
...formerly merely the head of ISIL and a veteran of the Bagram jailhouse. Looks like a new messiah to bajillions of Moslems, like just another dead-eyed mass murder to the rest of us...
, has been duped.

The two factions have been clashing as a result, accusing each other of abandoning their faith, The Wall Street Journal reported.

A new Boko Haram video released this week that declared allegiance to Shekau vowed to kill Nigeria’s president and army chief, according to The News Agency that Dare Not be Named.

New Boko Haram Video Threatens to Kill Nigeria's President

[ABCNEWS.GO] A new video by Boko Haram threatens to kill Nigeria's president and army chief and warns of further destruction, though the Islamic Death Eaters have not mounted a major attack in Nigeria in months.

A preacher in the video says Boko Haram is "even stronger now" and "will destroy what we never destroyed before," according to a translation from the Hausa by Premium Times newspaper.

The video posted on YouTube on Wednesday says it was shot Monday in Nigeria's northeastern Sambisa Forest at prayers marking Eid al-Adha festival. It shows scores of worshipping men, many armed, in a mosque and at an outdoor ceremony.

Army discovers Boko Haram conspiracy

[NEWS24.NG] The Nigerian Army claim to have uncovered a conspiracy in the latest Boko Haram video, saying that the images in the video showing thousands of Lions of Islam observing prayers during Eid celebrations as being photo-shopped, Naij reports.

The Army said in a statement that it sought to ease Nigerians who were apprehensive over the video, describing the act as a last resort to the few remaining Boko haram members to remain relevant.

"This has cast aspersion to the credibility of the clip and therefore should be disregarded. The Nigerian military is highly committed to making lives unbearable to the enemies of this nation wherever they are and would do all that is required within its rules of engagement to ensure that no part of Nigerian territory is conducive and habitable for forces of Evil and any other criminals to stay and operate," the statement read.

It also urged Nigerians not to bother over the antics of the sect as their end was imminent.

News24 reported that the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant-General Tukur Buratai, addressed top US defence officials and policy leaders on the efforts made by the military in the fight against insurgency in the North-East.

Buratai emphasised the fact that the fight against terrorism was one that concerned the entire global community and not only the countries.
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Africa Subsaharan
ISIS-affiliated Boko Haram leader injured confirms Nigeria’s leader
2016-08-29
[ALMASDARNEWS] Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari confirmed that the leader of ISIS-affiliated Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
, Abubakar Shekau
... the lunatic leader of Boko Haram who has been reported dead at least eleven times, pledged his body and soul to ISIS, told his fighters to hang it up once or twice, and been fire by the Caliph and refused to step down ...
, was injured in an Arclight airstrike conducted by the country’s airforce.

"We learned that in an Arclight airstrike by the Nigeria air force he was maimed," Buhari said in a statement on Sunday from the Kenyan capital Nairobi, where he is attending a development conference.

He also went on to claim that the Lions of Islam were in a bad position.

"Indeed their top hierarchy and lower cadre have a problem," Buhari said, adding, "They are not holding any territory and they have split into small groups attacking soft targets."

Last week Nigeria’s military said Shekau was maimed in an Arclight airstrike but released no further evidence or statement on his condition.

PressTV reported that according to ISIS-linked media, Abu Musab al-Barnawi, a former front man for Boko Haram, has replaced Shekau, who had been in charge since 2009. It was not clear why the change has taken place.

Shekau later released an audio message saying, "People should know we are still around," apparently defying ISIS and the decision to oust him.

Barnawi claimed his group remains "a force to be reckoned with," adding that the fight would go on against West African countries.

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Africa Subsaharan
Nigeria claims it killed Boko Haram's Shekau in raid
2016-08-23
[AllAfrika] The Nigerian Army on Tuesday announced the death of three key commanders of the extremist Boko Haram sect.

The army said the terrorists were killed on Friday in a major air strike on their location in the dreaded Sambisa Forest.

The spokesperson for the Army, Sani Usman, said the leader of the terrorist group, Abubakar Shekau, was also inflicted with with "fatal injury" during the operation.

Mr. Sani, a colonel, said the bombardment was carried out on Friday while Mr. Shekau, who the Nigerian military had pronounced dead several times in the past years, was leading his group in performing the Friday prayers at a secret location called Tayye in the heart of the vast forest.

The military has repeatedly claimed credit for killing Mr. Shekau. But the sect denounced the claims each time saying its leader remained alive. At times, Mr. Shekau would appear in a video to prove he had not been killed.
Let's hope they've got him this time. We've grown tired of the teasing.
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Africa Subsaharan
Nigeria: Military Says Boko Haram Leader, Shekau, Wounded in Deadly Air Strike
2016-08-24
More on this story from yesterday.
[AllAfrica] The Nigerian Army on Tuesday announced the death of three key commanders of the extremist Boko Haram sect.

The army said the terrorists were killed on Friday in a major air strike on their location in the dreaded Sambisa Forest.

The spokesperson for the Army, Sani Usman, said the leader of the terrorist group, Abubakar Shekau, was also inflicted with with "fatal injury" during the operation.

Mr. Sani, a colonel, said the bombardment was carried out on Friday while Mr. Shekau, who the Nigerian military had pronounced dead several times in the past years, was leading his group in performing the Friday prayers at a secret location called Tayye in the heart of the vast forest.

The military has repeatedly claimed credit for killing Mr. Shekau. But the sect denounced the claims each time saying its leader remained alive. At times, Mr. Shekau would appear in a video to prove he had not been killed.

The military however insisted that the original Abubakar Shekau had long been killed, and that the so-called Abubakar Shekau said to be alive was a made-up character.

Giving further details of Friday bombardment, Mr. Sani gave the names of those killed in the raid as Abubakar Mubi, Malam Nuhu and Malam Hamman.

Our correspondent in Maiduguri said the air raid was not immediately reported because journalists have no access to the location. Military insiders also said the air force had no idea how successful the bombardments were until late Monday when the Army became aware of those killed and injured in battle.

Colonel Usman's statement reads in full:

"In what one could describe as the most unprecedented and spectacular air raid, we have just confirmed that as a result of the interdiction efforts of the Nigerian Air Force, some key leaders of the Boko Haram terrorists have been killed while others were fatally wounded.

"The air interdiction took place last week Friday 19th August 2016, while the terrorists were performing Friday rituals at Taye village,

"Those Boko Haram terrorists commanders confirmed dead include Abubakar Mubi, Malam Nuhu and Malam Hamman, amongst others. While their leader, so called "Abubakar Shekau", is believed to be fatally wounded on his shoulders. Several other terrorists were also wounded".
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