Boko Haram is an Islamic sect that believes politics in northern Nigeria has been seized by a group of corrupt, false Muslims, according to United States Institute of Peace.
Its members want to create an Islamic caliphate ruled by sharia law in northeastern Nigeria.
- Group is based in northeastern city of Maiduguri.
- Its self-proclaimed leader is Abubakar Shekau.
- Group began in 2002 as a non-violent Islamist splinter group.
- It launched an uprising in 2009, and since 2010 has killed nearly 20,000 people.
- Its seven-year insurgency has displaced nearly 2 million people and left nearly 1 million children with little or no access to an education.
- Amnesty International said about 2,000 children have been abducted by Boko Haram since 2014. Many are used as sex slaves, fighters and suicide bombers.
- Boko Haram translates to "Western education is sinful."
- In March 2015, Boko Haram affiliates itself with the Islamic State group.