News / Africa

Nigeria Boko Haram Crisis Escalates in 2013

Nigeria Boko Haram Crisis Escalates in 2013i
X
December 17, 2013 12:18 AM
2013 was supposed to be the year that ended Boko Haram, an Islamist insurgent group that has been terrorizing northern Nigeria for four years. Heather Murdock reports for VOA from Maiduguri thousands of troops were sent to three northeastern states to battle insurgents, but the violence continues and the region remains under emergency rule.
Heather Murdock
2013 was supposed to be the year that ended Boko Haram, an Islamist insurgent group that has been terrorizing northern Nigeria for four years.  Thousands of troops were sent to three northeastern states to battle insurgents, but the violence continues and the region remains under emergency rule.  

At the beginning of the year, war in Mali dominated the news from West Africa.
But in May, Nigeria's President, Goodluck Jonathan said insurgency in Nigeria was escalating.  Boko Haram had captured territories.  Ongoing attacks, assassinations and kidnappings amounted to a declaration of war.  Jonathan declared a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states, directing his military chief of staff to immediately deploy more troops to those areas.  

It was Nigeria’s largest offensive against Boko Haram.  In the first six months of the state of emergency, the military secured northern cities, but attacks continued in the countryside.

Army spokesperson Colonel Muhammad Dole told reporters his troops had cut off basic supplies to Boko Haram.

“We were also able to cut most of their supplies so the attack on villages so the attack on villages is a desperation so they can survive.  They do not have food.  They do not have water,"  said Dole who added that he believed some insurgents had fled to neighboring countries.  

In November, the United States declared Boko Haram and splinter group Ansaru foreign terrorist organizations.  Emergency rule was extended for another six months.
Two weeks later, residents of Maiduguri, the original home of the insurgency, said they felt safe for the first time in years.   

“Since then, we did not hear of any insurgents, any cheating around.  So we can say life is better now," said Dauda Tatally, who owns a small computer supply shop in Maiduguri..

But in early December, the feeling of safety in Maiduguri vanished after militants attacked the air force, the army and the police.

The military imposed a 24-hour curfew for the first time in years.  The attack left an army and a police base destroyed and dozens of cars and oil trucks burnt out.  Air force soldiers refused journalists entry to their base.

Fighting takes a heavy toll

Human Rights Watch says Boko Haram has killed thousands of people in the past four years and heavy-handed tactics by security forces have killed hundreds more.

Researcher Eric Guttschuss says inter-community violence has also killed thousands of people in past four years and that the government’s failure to prosecute offenders is feeding the Boko Haram crisis.

“One of reasons to that they have used to justify these attacks is to say ‘When Muslims were attacked in Plateau State, for example, those who carried out the attacks, nothing happened to them and the government turned a blind eye," he said.
 
More violence between religious, political and tribal groups is expected next year before Nigeria’s 2015 presidential elections.

The Nigerian military says it continues to battle the group, killing Boko Haram fighters in shootouts and air raids.

But in the countryside, locals say people are still being killed, homes are still being burned and they still live in constant fear.

You May Like

Polls Open in Scotland Independence Vote

As race to persuade undecided voters continues, 'No' voters say they believe life in Scotland will slowly improve, 'Yes' vote not worth the risk More

China-India Border Standoff Continues as Leaders Hold Summit

New Delhi accuses hundreds of Chinese soldiers of illegally entering Indian territory in disputed region of Ladakh More

Ukrainian Activist in Despair About Future of Her Country

IrIna Dovgan, accused of being a spy and tortured by pro-Russian separatists, is appealing to UN Human Rights Council to support her country More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Franca French from: Grambling Louisiana
December 17, 2013 10:36 PM
Nigeria is not Baba country. Baba is the only Nigeria cadet that failed basic officers' training in Sandhurst this implies that Baba is not a smart man. Baba is the handiwork of late Dr.Ukpabi Asika and General Gowon. Baba is a grand wizard of Ogboni cult which he sometimes mistakes for born again christain.


by: afolabi kuti from: sagamu ogun syate
December 17, 2013 5:29 AM
Baba Iyabo has told mr president to borrow is formular to dis boko haramu bcus de time of baba there is. Peace no nosense nig neen the type of Obasanjo ( if only baba can rule nigerial is welcom .oo

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Wateri
X
September 17, 2014 8:44 PM
Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid