News / Africa

Nigeria Makes More Boko Haram Arrests

Soldiers stand behind items recovered from suspected Boko Haram members, Bukavu Barracks in Kano, Nigeria, March 21, 2012 (file photo).
Soldiers stand behind items recovered from suspected Boko Haram members, Bukavu Barracks in Kano, Nigeria, March 21, 2012 (file photo).
VOA News
Nigeria's military says it has arrested another 49 members of the Islamist militant group known as Boko Haram.
 
The military said Wednesday it captured the suspected militants in Yobe, one of three northeastern states placed under emergency rule as part of a military offensive against the group.
 
The military says it has captured more than 150 Boko Haram members since it launched the offensive last month.
 
Its claims of success have been impossible to verify because of downed phone networks and restricted access to the conflict zone.
 
Meanwhile, President Goodluck Jonathan has formally declared Boko Haram and its suspected splinter group Ansaru to be outlawed terrorist organizations.
 
Nigerian authorities say Ansaru is responsible for kidnapping and killing Westerners. The group is believed to have ties to al-Qaida's North African wing, al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).
 
The terrorist designation allows the government to impose prison sentences of a minimum of 20 years on group members or supporters.
 
Boko Haram launched its uprising in 2009. The shadowy group wants to impose Islamic law in northern Nigeria. Human Rights Watch says more than 3,000 people have been killed in Boko Haram-related violence, including hundreds of killings by military forces fighting the group.
 
According to Peter Pham, head of the Central Africa program the Atlantic Council, a Washington-based international security think tank, the Nigerian government's crackdown may not be effective at ending longtime unrest in the north.
 
"The state of emergency in three northern states ... inflames the population because the insurgents are hidden among the population," Pham recently said during an interview with Voice of America’s Encounter. "No doubt the military has killed some insurgents but, in the process, there are extremely credible reports that they are also killing innocent civilians as well, and that's not going to win hearts and minds, which is the key of any counter-insurgency."
 
Pham says the clashes between government forces and militants have also created a refugee crisis in the region, with thousands of Nigerians fleeing into neighboring Niger.
 
Some information for this report was provided by AP.

You May Like

Video Miami Cubans Divided on New US Policy

While older, more conservative Cuban Americans have promoted anti-Castro political movement for years, younger generations say economically, it is time for change More

2014 Sees Dramatic Uptick in Boko Haram Abductions

Militants suspected in latest mass kidnapping of over 100 people in Gumsuri, Nigeria on Sunday More

Video Cuba Deal Is Major Victory for Pope

Role of Francis hailed throughout US, Latin America - though some Cuban-American Catholics have mixed feelings More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid