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Boko Haram Leader Issues New Threat

  • VOA News

This screen grab image taken on February 18, 2015 from a video made available by Islamist group Boko Haram shows Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau making a statement at an undisclosed location.

This screen grab image taken on February 18, 2015 from a video made available by Islamist group Boko Haram shows Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau making a statement at an undisclosed location.

The head of Nigerian militant group Boko Haram has threatened to disrupt the country's elections, which were already postponed until next month because of violence.

In a new video posted online late Tuesday, Boko Haram chief Abubakar Shekau said that even if clashes cost his fighters their lives, Allah will not allow the elections to proceed.

The militant group has repeatedly warned Nigerians not to vote in the presidential and parliamentary elections, now set for March 28. The polls were originally scheduled for February 14 but election officials decided to push back the vote.

Meanwhile, reports from southeastern Niger say at least 20 people were killed after an unidentified plane dropped a bomb on a village near the Nigerian border. Nigeria has denied responsibility for the bombing, which took place in an area where Boko Haram is active.

The Nigerian military says its forces have killed more than 300 militants and retaken 11 towns from Boko Haram during air and land operations since Monday.

There was no way to independently confirm the military's claims.

Boko Haram has killed thousands of Nigerians in the past five years and seized numerous towns in the northeast for what it calls an Islamic caliphate.

Forces from Niger, Cameroon and Chad are working to help Nigeria fight the group, which has responded with attacks in each of those countries.

Inside Nigeria, bombs went off in three different locations Tuesday, causing dozens of casualties. The violence included an attack at a political rally for the opposition APC party in Okrika, a town in southern Rivers state.

APC is mounting a strong challenge to the ruling PDP party and President Goodluck Jonathan, who has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram.


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