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

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year 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.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More