|Mohammed Yusuf Shah||Mohammed Yusuf Shah||Hizbul Mujahideen||India-Pakistan||20030411|
|14 Insurgents, 3 Soldiers Killed in Nigeria Offensive|
|[Naharnet] A key city in was on lockdown Sunday as the military enforced a 24-hour curfew and blocked supply routes in its sweeping campaign against Islamist s.|
The operation against , the group that wants an Islamic state in northern Nigeria, is aimed at retaking territory seized by the and ridding the country of "terrorist activities," the military has said.
The offensive has included air strikes on Boko Haram strongholds in remote parts of northeastern Borno state, and has spread to the state capital Maiduguri, the s' traditional home base -- which residents said Sunday was under a blockade.
The defense ministry in a mission update said 14 and three soldiers had been killed in battles since Saturday and that Special forces troops were continuing "the advance and attack on identified terrorist camps".
"Patrols are also ongoing to secure towns and villages from infiltration, while curfews on identified flash points are being enforced," the ministry statement said.
Soldiers have sealed roads heading out of Maiduguri, blocking supply routes to remote towns where Boko Haram Islamists have seized power, residents said.
"There is a huge build-up of trucks loaded with essential commodities... along the Baga road on the way out of Maiduguri to the northern part of the state," said resident Ibrahim Yahaya.
"The drivers said they have been prevented by the military from going northward," he told Agence Presse by email.
The phone network in Borno has all but collapsed since President on Tuesday declared a state of emergency there and in two neighboring states, Adamawa and Yobe.
The military on Saturday imposed a round-the-clock curfew in 12 Maiduguri neighborhoods considered Boko Haram bastions.
The curfew was being enforced on Sunday, with most roads deserted, an AFP journalist reported, while some living in areas not impacted by the curfew also stayed indoors.
"My area is not affected but I have to stay at home with my family," trader Ezekiel Adamu said.
He explained that he was afraid of coming across soldiers, who "seem to have more power with the state of emergency".
Supplies were also running short in the city, where Boko Haram was founded more than a decade ago by the radical Mohammed Yusuf, who was killed in detention in 2009.
The price of basic goods has soared with supply lorries prevented from entering the city.
"We've been eating without meat since Friday... but there is nothing I can do. This is the challenge of emergency rule," said resident David Olutayo.
Supply shortages and price hikes have also started to bite in the town of Gomboru Ngala, on the border with Cameroon, where some Borno residents have fled to escape the air raids.
"Trucks bringing in goods from Maiduguri have ceased since last week," said resident Grema Babagoni, adding that prices had soared as much as 25 percent.
"If the blockade continues for some time we may completely run out of supplies," he told AFP
Residents in Gomboru Ngala can be reached by phone as the service uses Cameroonian lines.
The town has seen an influx of people fleeing the nearby Marte district, one of the areas where Boko Haram chased out the government and removed Nigerian flags.
Marte has been among the areas targeted by air strikes, residents have told AFP.
A senior rescue official who requested anonymity told AFP that he had could not say what impact the offensive has had on civilians because his staff in Borno and Yobe have been unreachable.
"I have sent emails and texts but have not heard anything yet," the official said.
The operation could prove to be the largest ever against Boko Haram.
A brutal crackdown on the in 2009, concentrated in Maiduguri, killed more than 800 people and forced the Islamists underground for a year.
Since re-emerging in 2010, they have carried out scores of attacks, including gun raids and s.
Many fear that like the 2009 crackdown, the current campaign may fail to crush the group.
Nigeria, Africa's most populous country and top oil producer, has been urged to tackle root causes of the conflict, including acute poverty and excessive government corruption which has helped radicalize many young s in the north.
There is also a risk of high civilian casualties, with Nigeria's military having been accused of massive rights abuses in the past.
The conflict is estimated to have cost 3,600 lives since 2009, including killings by the security services.
Jonathan has said that negotiations remain possible amid the sweeping offensive, but the Islamists have so far shown no signs of wanting to talk.
|Boko Haram Gets Sponsorship From Algeria, FG Tells Court|
|[ALLAFRICA] Federal Government, yesterday, told a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja that investigations revealed that the Islamist sect, , received sponsor-ship from another terrorist organization based in Algeria.|
The Federal Government, which made the disclosure on a day the high court commenced trial of one of alleged kingpins of the sect, Kabiru Umar, a.k.a Kabiru Sokoto, who allegedly ed the Christmas day that killed about 44 persons and 75 others at St. Theresa's Catholic Church at Madalla, Niger State, in 2011, gave the name of the Algerian terrorist group as iyama.
A masked witness, who was identified as Mr. XYZ in his testimony, further told the court that the sect not only received funds from the foreign terror network, but also robbed Christians whenever the need for money arose.
He added that the accused person, in a statement he made on January 14, 2012, confessed that it was in the process of sharing a particular fund that was received from iyama, that the Boko Haram sect became factionalised.
Narrating how Kabiru Sokoto was caught, the witness, who told the court that he was a terrorism expert, said the accused person had confessed that he was inducted into the sect by Hameel Abdulrazak in 2007, noting that prior to that time, the accused worked as a laboratory assistant at a Specialist Hospital in Sokoto State.
He told the court that before the accused person was apprehended at Borno State Government Lodge on January 13, 2012, after the police searched for him in so many northern states following his alleged complicity in sundry acts of terrorism, he had been an ardent follower of the late leader of the sect, Mohammed Yusufu, who was killed in 2009.
The witness said: "I had trailed the accused to Abaji where he has a house, I stayed there three days but he was nowhere to be found.
" I later got information that he was sighted at Borno State Governor's Lodge, so I immediately went there with my team. We searched the lodge and got to the boys quarters where he ran and hid at room two.
Given away by phone
"When we knocked for over 30 minutes and he didn't open, I decided to break the door with my leg, but the accused pushed from the inside until I called my team and we overpowered him.
"Because we didn't know him in person then, I asked him if he was Kabiru Sokoto and he denied. Then I searched him and found an LG phone on him which I used and dialed my own number only for Kabiru Sokoto's number, which we have been using to trail him to appear.
"Then I asked him again, and he said he was not Kabiru Sokoto but Kabiru Umar.
"My Lord, he spoke in fluent English and told me he lives at Abaji but hails from Sokoto State."
The witness told the court that when he took the accused to the station, he informed the dismissed Commissioner of Police for the FCT, Mr. Zakari Biu, who he said arrived from Kano.
|Another Boko Haram Figure Speaks, Ruling Out Dialogue|
|[OSUNDEFENDER.ORG] SaharaReporters has obtained an audio interview of a man, identified as Mujhahedeen Muhammad Marwana, who claims to be the second-in-command to Boko Haram leader Imam Abubakar Shekau, conducted in Hausa by phone in Bauchi State, by a foreign journalist.|
In it, Marwana speaks authoritatively about meetings between members of his group and some top Northerners, including Governor Sule Lamido, former Minister of Defence Bello Halliru, and Sheik Dahiru Bauchi. The translation, into English, did not provide any context to those meetings.
According to the source which made the tape available, the interview was broadcast yesterday, January 28, but it is unclear when it was conducted and where it was broadcast. Translated into English, the interview shows Marwana dispelling any possible dialogue with the militants because the government has allegedly killed 47 Boko Haram emissaries in dialogue efforts that have never seen the light of day.
In the interview, Marwanna also explained Boko Haram's predicament in Kano, stating that four principal members of their group are being "unjustly" held there and must first be released as a pre-condition for any future developments. He indicated that there are others also being held in Abuja, Maiduguri and other locations in the North.
He told his interviewer: "Many people have called us for dialogue many times but the government is fooling itself, thinking they are clever but [are] deceiving themselves. They are insisting they don't know us, it is false, we have met their representatives many times but because of their evil plan they kept denying [us] because of their greed and wickedness."
Marwana also reiterated that Boko Haram is following Allah's instruction to serve him and that his group is not attacking anyone unjustly.
He asked: "Before they attack us, have you ever see us attacking them and their cronies from the beginning? Even pressmen we have no problem with them except where there were some plots," he said.
Apparently on the subject of treachery on the part of the government, he recalled "the first meeting" following the execution of former Boko Haram leader Mohammed Yusuf in Maiduguri.
"We were six in Shehu's Palace," he recalled. "From there we were 40 that met in Damaturu and only three of us survived. We went to Kaduna and met in Arewa House; of 11 of us, 10 were killed by special squad of security agencies around Tafa on Abuja way, with all these, who is a cheat and want trouble? We sat with Governor Sule Lamido, former minister of defence, Bello Halliru and Sheik Dahiru Bauchi, this is what we want our Muslim Ummah to know."
|Boko Haram leader Shekau shot, escapes to Mali|
|[VANGUARDNGR] There were indications yesterday in Abuja, that the leader of the Boko Haram Islamic sect, Imam Abubakar Shekau was wounded during a gun battle with security men recently.|
Sources told Saturday Vanguard that the Federal Government approved the deployment of 1,200 soldiers apparently because of the need to arrest the leader.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Azubuike Ihejirika who addressed officers and soldiers of the Nigerian army shortly before they were airlifted to Mali Thursday in Kaduna, asked them to be extra vigilant as there are indications that some had sneaked into the country with the aim of causing havoc.
Ihejirika however, pointed out that the Nigerian Army was not resting on its oars as the war against terror was being won.
Saturday Vanguard learnt that the battle between the JTF and the sect members took place at Gao city, in the heart of Northern Mali presently under the control of Tuareg s.
It was further learnt that Shekau, who is having N50million ransom hanging on his head from the Federal Government, was ferried to Mali through one of the porous routes in the vast Nigerian border without Customs and Immigration authorities getting wind of it.
Saturday Vanguard was told that while the Boko Haram leader was being given medication in Gao, the foreign sponsors of the sect's activities in Nigeria, were busy, using his name to indoctrinate, train and recruit more members for the sect.
Shekau was said to have been shot at a checkpoint when he reportedly attempted to deceive operatives of the JTF by posing as a nomadic Fulani who was returning from a journey. on approach of the vehicle conveying him and members of his sect, ''a hot exchange of gunfire ensued as the sect members started firing at the soldiers who equally returned fire for fire.''
During the crossfire, he and two other sect members with him escaped with gunshot wounds while two members of the sect were killed on the spot. Some AK 47 rifles were recovered from the vehicle.
While stating that most of the weaponry including IEDS recovered from Boko Haram members have been traced to the weaponry used during the Libyan uprising against late Libyan leader, Qadaffy, the source said Nigerian security agencies believed that the more sophisticated and deadly weaponry had gotten to the hands of sect members but they are unable to operate them because they are not trained for it.
The source cited the discovery of Shekau's hideout and the training base for Boko Haram sect members to unleash terror on Nigerians as a further justification of the action of the federal government to deploy 1, 200 troops as well as Airforce fighter and transport aircraft to Mali to help flush out the Tuareg and their sponsors.
Saturday Vanguard further gathered that security has been beefed up along the Nigerian Army First Mechanized Division and the Third Armoured Division's areas of responsibilities with the deployment of soldiers at the borders to complement the work of other security agencies following the escalation of the Mali crisis with a view to checkmating infiltrations into the country by terrorists.
|Nigeria Boko Haram commander Ibn Saleh Ibrahim 'killed'|
|That means he's 'dead,' right?|
Nigeria's military has killed a top commander of Islamist group in the north-eastern city of Maiduguri, an army has said.
Ibn Saleh Ibrahim was killed in an exchange of fire with six of his lieutenants, the added.
An unknown number of civilians are said to have been killed in the crossfire, says a BBC in Nigeria.
Boko Haram, which has killed hundreds of people since 2009, has not commented on Mr Ibrahim's reported death.
The group's founding leader, Mohammed Yusuf, was killed by security forces in July 2009.
Boko Haram is now said to be led by Abubakar Shekau.
Army Lt Col Sagir Musa told the BBC that Mr Ibrahim was "very close" to Mr Shekau and had a reputation of being "invincible".
"Yesterday [Thursday], we learned he was in town and we were able to track him in a special operation," he said.
"There was an exchange of fire and in the process he was killed with six of his lieutenants."
There has been no independent confirmation of Mr Ibrahim's role in Boko Haram.
Lt Col Musa said Mr Ibrahim had been responsible for last month's of retired General Mohammed Shuwa following an order from Mr Shekau.
Gen Shuwa was at his home in Maiduguri - no group has said it carried out the attack.
He is regarded by the Nigerian military as a war hero, and played a key role in crushing Biafran separatists during Nigeria's brutal civil war in the 1960s.
In a statement, Lt Col Musa said the operation in Maiduguri, supported by armoured personnel carriers and helicopters, was on-going.
Weapons and s have been recovered, he added.
The BBC's Abdullahi Kaura in the northern city of Kaduna says residents in Maiduguri told him that the security forces have sealed off four areas within the city - Ngarnam, Bulabulin, Bayan Quarters and Flatari.
This has made it impossible for people to move in and out of the areas, though some managed to flee on Thursday when fighting broke out, he adds.
Military helicopters were circling the suspected Boko Haram strongholds, but no shooting was heard on Friday, our quotes residents as saying.
Residents also told our that during Thursday's , civilians, including , were killed after being caught in the crossfire.
The number of casualties is not known.
Earlier this month, rights group accused Nigeria's security forces of carrying out widespread abuses in their campaign against Boko Haram, including extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances and torture.
The group is campaigning to impose Islamic law across Nigeria.
It has carried out a wave of bombings and s since 2009.
|Puntland Forces Seize Suspected Al Shabab Agents With Weapons|
|(Sh. M. Network)-The security forces of the Somalia's northern semi-autonomous region of ,have on Wednesday conducted security operations in northern divided Galka'yo, some 750 Km north of Mogadishu, witnesses and security officials said.|
Eyewitnesses said the army has dozens of carrying explosives, whom the officials are accusing to have links with Al shabab and are now being held at a prison northern Galka'yo.
Mohammed Yusuf Jama'a, the governor of Mudug state for Puntland, told s in Galka'yo town that the security forces are committed to continue the operations to secure the town.
"These military operations will not stop until they (gangs) are wiped out from the entire city," he added.
The city is divided into two zones, where the main northern portion forms part of Puntland state, while its southern tip is governed by the administration.
|Kenya vows to continue Shabaab offensive in Somalia|
| (Sh.M.Network) -- Prime Minister Raila Odinga has ruled out pulling Kenyan troops from Somalia, saying it will be tantamount to surrendering to terrorism.|
He made it clear that Kenyan troops will not leave Somalia until the country is liberated and pacified, noting Kenya will not be at peace until Somalia which has not known peace for two decades realizes peace.
"We wantSomaliato be peaceful so that the 500,000 Somali refugees being hosted in Dadaab refugee camp can go back to their country to relieveKenyaof the burden of hosting them," he said.
"Surrender is therefore not an option for us because if we leaveSomalia, anarchy will set in which will spill over the borders."
The PM was speaking in Garissa where he addressed and Christian religious leaders at a meeting called at the Provincial Commissioner's office to find a lasting solution to frequent terror attacks on churches in the area.
The meeting was attended by Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka and acting Minister for internal security Mohammed Yusuf Haji.
Saying terrorism transcended religious, political or racial boundaries, Odinga asked Kenyans to rise up and join the security forces in fighting this vice which, he added, if not checked will snowball into a huge conflagration that can consume the entire region.
He said: "It is known that A recently joined Al Qaeda, and there is danger that the terrorist organizations could link up with other terrorist groups like in Nigeriato destabilize the whole African continent."
Odinga who sent his condolences to the bereaved families assured them and Kenyans that the will be tracked down, and punished.
Terming the terrorist attacks on churches as cowardly, the PM cautioned Kenyans against falling prey to the machinations of the whom, he said, wanted to incite religious animosity between Christians and s.
The PM appealed for sobriety in the wake of the attacks, saying it was improper to abortion blame to any religious sect as that will be playing in the hands of the terrorists.
leaders who spoke at the meeting condemned the incident saying it had nothing to do with religion but an act of terrorism.
They pledged to team up with security forces and their Christian counterparts to protect churches from similar attacks in the future.
|BOKO HARAM: FG reaches out to Muslim leaders, scholars|
|[Nigerian Tribune] AS part of a soft approach to the ongoing Islamist insurgency, the Federal Government has commenced discreet contacts with moderate Islamist salafists who, while sharing similar thoughts with the Jihadi salafists within the sect, are opposed to armed struggle.|
Previous efforts at reaching the had been through mainstream Islamic leaders who, in no way, share the conservative interpretation of Islam, with the Boko Haram sect and, therefore, incapable of motivating genuine dialogue with the Federal Government.
Nigerian Tribune was told that moderate salafi-Wahabists from the North and the South are to be contacted as a starting point in the dialogue process even as it was gathered that Nigeria is reaching outside its shores to moderate salafi organizations across Africa and Middle East.
It was specifically learnt that a particular moderate Islamic organization based in the North-Central part of the country would soon be contacted as the group is widely acclaimed as the umbrella body of salafiya-wahabiya movement and scholars in Nigeria.
The said organization was reported to be very influential and very deep in the salafiya thoughts and principles, just as it was gathered that the group, peopled by very enlightened Islamic scholars, is affiliated to an international body of moderate salafiyat movement based in Riyadh, the n political capital.
While details of the outreach were still scanty, findings showed that the new National Security Adviser is deploying softer tactics, especially in reaching out to the grass-roots salafiyas and s population who are reportedly already alienated from the government due to alleged strong arm tactics of the military in the troubled areas.
A source within the establishment told Nigerian Tribune at the weekend that the decision to reach out to the moderate salafists was designed specifically to address the religious component of the Boko Haram crisis.
Referring to Nigerian Tribune's publication of last Friday, the official noted that efforts to solve and tackle the political and criminal Boko Haram were well underway but accepted that the hard nut to crack is the religionists constituted by followers of the late Mohammed Yusuf.
"We are identifying the salafis, the wahabiyas, especially their moderate leaders. We want them to be the contact point this time round," the source said.
the issue of Nigerian participation in the Mali intervention force is creating division within the Nigerian security establishment with some arguing that avoiding Mali would amount to capitulating to international terrorists' threats.
A military officer told Nigerian Tribune that Nigeria risked a Kenyan scenario if it should deploy troops in Mali, noting that since Kenya intervened in the Somali conflicts, the Central African nation had become a hotbed of terrorist conflicts.
"We are at a cross roads here. The Malian Islamists are already in league with Boko Haram. If we take them on, then the Boko Haram thing will become internationalised and Jihadists all over the world will face Nigeria," the officer said.
Findings, however, showed that the new National Security Adviser will give formal advice to President later this week.
|Ahlu Sunna: We have no any representations in the ongoing roadmap meeting|
|(Sh. M. Network)-The administration of Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a (ASWJ), a pro-government group in central Somalia, announced on Tuesday that the group has no any representations in the ongoing Somalia's roadmap meeting inAddis Ababa.|
Sheik Mohammed Yusuf Hefow, the chairman of Ahlu Sunna's executive council in central Somalia, told Shabelle Media during an interview that they deny having any representations in the meeting.
Gap and differences are up-and-coming between the roadmap signatories and these differences mainly arise from the new draft constitution. Both state and Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a (ASWJ), both signatories, have recently opposed to the draft constitution.
These comments came as a meeting to bring together the six signatories of theSomalia's Road-map is underway in the capital city of Æthiopia,Addis Ababawith officials from the international community.
|Ahlu Sunna probes Tuesday's explosion in central Somalia|
| (Sh. M. Network)- An official in Ahlu Sunna Waljamaa (ASWJ) said Wednesday that his fighters in central Somalia have begun this morning probing into the Tuesday's deadly bombing at a coffee shop in Dhusamareb town.|
Sheik Mohammed Yusuf better known as (Hefow) announced that they are hunting down the of the suicide bomb that killed at least 8 people, including s and prominent Somali politicians while more than 30 others have been injured.
Locals said the injured people were on Wednesday morning taken to the local hospitals in Gur'el town, a town in central Somalia and controlled by Ahlu Sunna Walaja'a allied with Somali government.
On March 20, 2012, A raided the city at dawn, briefly captured it then after intense fighting with Ahlusunna Waljamaa (ASWJ) fighters that left 30 people dead.
|Attorney general issues arrest warrant for convicted TFG official|
|(Sh. M. Network)-The national attorney-general of Somalia government issued an arrest warrant for the chief of Banadir region first degree court for his involvement in releasing of prisoners at Mogadishu central penitentiary during this month.|
Dr.Ali Mohammed Yusuf who got in touch with Shabelle Media by phone made more comments about the arrest warrant for Aydid Abdullah better know as (Ilka Hanaf) by the office of The attorney-general and he said the judge was accused of releasing criminal prisoners on cash in illegal system.
Yusuf says after long running investigation into the case of the judge, the national attorney-general of Somalia government has decided to order the arrest of Mr. Aydid Abdullah and put on trail as soon as possible. He added: "This kind of crime committed by (Ilka Hanaf) is absolutely against the nationhood of Somalia and to move the country out of corruption."
"Numerous prisoners are now being held unlawfully at Mogadishu's central detention center whom the office of the national attorney-general is now aware of why they are in the jail and from where they were from," he added.
|Nigeria sect leader defends killings in video|
|() - The leader of Nigerian Islamist sect said recent killings of Christians were justifiable attacks and President had no power to stop the group's insurgency, in the first video of him posted online.|
The 15 minute video of Abubakar Shekau posted on YouTube is similar in style to messages submitted by other Islamist groups like al Qaeda, a sign of the growing influence other jihadist movements are having on the sect.
Boko Haram, whose name translates from the northern Hausa language as "Western education is sinful", has been behind almost daily killings in its home base in the largely northeast, most recently targeting Christians.
"Christians, everyone knows what they have done to us and s ... we were attacked and we decided to defend ourselves and, because we were on the right path, Allah has made us stronger," Shekau says in Hausa, sat in front of two Kalashnikov rifles and wearing a camouflage bullet proof jacket.
Shekau is understood to have taken over control of Boko Haram, which wants sharia law more widely applied across Africa's most populous nation, after the sect's founder Mohammed Yusuf was killed in police custody in 2009 following an uprising in which 700 people were killed.
"Everyone knows how our leader was murdered and everyone knows the way the s were killed," Shekau says, remaining stony faced and calm throughout.