UN denounces Nigeria terror attacks
The UN denounces recent terror attacks in Nigeria and neighboring Cameroon. Boko Haram which earlier claimed responsibility for the kidnapping of Nigerian school girls is blamed for the latest atrocity.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security…The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice. They stressed that those responsible for these terrorist attacks should be held accountable, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with all relevant authorities in this regard.
Nigerian blasts kill eight
Three blasts hit Nigeria’s north-eastern city of Maiduguri, killing at least eight people. The army blames Boko Haram for the attack.
Chad’s President Deby says Boko Haram has a new leader. He does not say what had happened to Shekau, but says he had been replaced by Daoud – who has not been heard of before. Derby says Daoud is open to dialogue.
Boko Haram is decapitated. There are little groups [of fighters] scattered throughout east Nigeria, on border with Cameroon. It is within our power to definitely overcome Boko Haram.
Deby added that he would not recommend that Nigeria negotiate with ‘a terrorist’.
Gives military three months
Buhari swears in a new set of military chiefs in Abuja, ordering them to end Boko Haram’s Islamist insurgency within three months.
You need to brace up and continue to team up with other stakeholders to come up with a well co-ordinated joint effort which will bring a desired end to these insurgencies within three months. The activities of these misguided groups and individuals have resulted in wanton destruction of lives and properties of our citizens and a disruption of social economic lives of millions of Nigerians.
The president urges the armed forces to conform with international law.
In particular you must protect innocent civilians and respect the rights of combatants.
US to provide military training
After his four-person bipartisan delegation meets with Buhari and military service chiefs, Issa says the U.S. is ready to provide military training to help Nigeria’s battle against Islamic extremists. He says Nigeria’s military is not outgunned by Boko Haram and needs training, not arms, to defeat the insurgents. This contradicts Buhari, who says that the United States is aiding Boko Haram by refusing to sell attack helicopters to Nigeria. Issa:
The number one thing we bring is professional training to help the Nigerian forces fight Boko Haram and to advise them how to treat insurgents and civilians captured in the war zone. [Nigeria’s military] doesn’t lack basic firearms … it lacks training in military strategy and in international and humanitarian laws. This is a military that was allowed to fall into disrepair during the previous administration. Morale is low when training is low.
He says Obama’s pledge to give whatever training is needed signals ‘a new day’ in U.S.-Nigeria relations.
Returnees allege discrimination
Residents of Michika, whose communities have been recaptured from Boko Haram, rsay alarm over alleged discriminatory distribution of relief materials. Some of the returnees say a leading tribe in the area is marginalizing the other tribes using ethno-religious sentiments to distribute relief items and denying many other relief items. A returnees:
Whenever there is a relief material to be distributed, members of a particular tribe which I don’t want to mention would dominate the distribution points making sure that other tribes do not benefit. If there is a list to be taken, they make sure that only their tribes men or kith and kins were listed for support. My people are experiencing this particularly in Garta village of the area.
Another complainant also calls for government intervention to check the discrimination, adding that Michika Local Government has long history of ethno-religious tension that is aggravated by the Boko Haram crisis.
This is the time for relevant authorities and leaders from the area to intervene to address this problem before it turns into an ethno- religious crisis being experienced in parts of Plateau and Kaduna states.
Cameroon expels thousands
Cameroon expels more than 3,000 Nigerians, and arrests hundreds of other Cameroonians and Nigerians accused of collaborating with Boko Haram. The Nigerians who are deported said they were refugees but were not staying at camps and lacked identification papers. They were taken across the border to the Nigerian town of Mubi. Official:
In the different villages there is a certain population of foreigners and they are hiding behind some Cameroonians and hiding those Boko Haram suspects.
In Nigeria, many of those expelled said they were forced out quickly:
It was a terrible journey. We spent almost six days on the road. We initially pleaded with the Cameroonian officials to give us grace of some days, but were put in trucks.
Release beheading video
Boko Haram releases a video of a uniformed man – believed to be a police officer – being handcuffed, held at gunpoint and beheaded. The footage – released by terrorist operating in the north of Nigeria – also shows militants attacking an army barracks. The eight-minute video clip, shared on social media, is recorded in a similar style to videos released by ISIS. The video shows intense firefights in the day and night time on army barracks in Borno and Yobe. The extremists are filmed carrying AK-47s and are backed up by tanks and heavy weaponry. The footage cuts to a scene with a man dressed in uniform – believed to be a policeman – who is then held down and beheaded by three jihadis. An unidentified fighter, shown in the video with looted army weapons and ammunition, and an ISIS flag, says the footage shows Nigeria’s military has not forced Boko Haram from its positions and got them hemmed into the Sambisa Forest, as the military has claimed.
Army finds cut street poles, stolen animals
While clearing terrorists in and around Dikwa, Borno State, Nigerian troops discover a pile of street lamp poles cut into pieces by Boko Haram terrorists which they use in making Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) for terror activities in parts of the North-East. Troops also recover 15 cows, 174 goats and a donkey from rustlers. Troops have near Jakana, arrest a fuel supplier to Boko Haram terrorists and Madu who coordinates buying of food items from neighbouring villages for the terrorists. The Nigerian military also blocked Boko Haram elements that attacked Dumbuluwa village.
Seven killed, four arrested
At least seven people are killed in attacks on Malari and three other neighbouring village in a remote area of Borno State by suspected Boko Haram members. A member of youth vigilante group says the insurgents started with Malari and proceeded to the three other villages, shooting on sight.
Casualties were minimal because people fled as soon as they heard about the Malari attack. That is why the casualty figure is seven, our men counted the corpses when they went to evacuate the dead ones after the Monday attacks.
A local politician from the area, tells the state governor during a visit to the area that nearly 1,000 people were displaced by the attacks. Four suspected members of the terror group are arrested by members of the youth vigilante group in a raid on the suspected hideouts of the insurgents after an earlier attack.
All four suspects who are locals of Malari village were disowned and exposed by their families on returning to the village. We arrested two of them today after their father handed them over to us, then they led us into the bush where two others hid themselves.
Upon interrogation, one of the suspects confessed their affiliation with the group. The suspects are paraded before the state governor. The governor, who recently returned from a visit with Buhari to the United States and neighbouring Cameroon, assures the villagers that his recent trip would soon yield positive results and that destroyed homes would be rebuilt.
Lawmaker urges Boko Haram negotiation
A member of the House of Representatives urges Buhari to negotiate with Boko Haram for the release of the abducted Chibok girls.
However, if it is about the Chibok girls, I support negotiating with Boko Haram. Life is precious. Anything that will bring the girls back is in order. Outside that, we should not negotiate with them. By the way who are we negotiating with? They have no agenda; nothing! They say they are anti book, yet they kill uneducated farmers. They say they are muslims, yet they kill Rasheeds and Ibrahims innocently selling goods at markets in the North East. Meanwhile, with Buhari who has deep background in military and security, I believe we will soon end them (Boko Haram). We also have to block corruption in the military.
Report: Some members want dialogue
The Centre for Crisis Communication says some elements of Boko Haram have reached out to the centre to facilitate dialogue with the federal government to end the insurgency in the country. The Center says that while the option of dialogue with the group is a hard sell, the window opened recently by President Buhari on the possibility of dialogue with genuine members of the terrorist group rekindled the hope for dialogue.
However the founder of Future Prowess Islamic Foundation, which takes care of hundreds of children, including those that lost their parents as a result of the Boko Haram crisis says several mistakes were made in the past and urged the government to trade softly.
We had phantom offers of dialogue in the past that did not yield any positive result and we must not complicate the issue any further. Government and our security forces must not give room for scammers. The real Boko Haram terrorists are in the hinterland; the way they operate is different. Yes, some members or foot soldiers of the Boko Haram may offer themselves available for dialogue but do they have the capacity to make any impact? Do they have the outreach to stop the mayhem we are experiencing? Do they have the ware withal to tell their members to lay down their arms? The answer is no. Our security agents must use their knowledge of intelligence to verify the identity of those that make the recent offer so that resources would not be wasted for a fruitless exercise.
US considers lifting Leahy Law
Congressman Issa tells military authorities in the Nigerian capital Abuja that the US is considering whether to relax or completely lift the ban to improve Nigeria’s fight against Boko Haram.
This is because of the trust in the new regime which has begun the process of ensuring that the military’s professionalism in the battle field is made in a way that we all can be confident that the rule of law is followed. Following this development, we have begun the process of lifting restrictions under the Leahy Law but the vast majority of the support US provides will be given regardless of the restrictions.
Arrests two suspected terrorists
Cameroon authorities arrest two suspected members of Boko Haram disguised as female refugees. The men, who were carrying explosives in their luggage, are stopped at the Minawao refugee camp in the north of the country, near the border with Nigeria. Cameroon’s government spokesman says the men are being interrogated. He also says authorities arrested a number of foreigners suspected of collaborating with Boko Haram.
Leader absent from video
Boko Haram releases a new video in Nigeria, with leader Shekau again failing to appear in it. His continued absence increases speculation that Shekau is in deep hiding, or has been killed.. In the eight-minute video, an unidentified young man speaks in the name of the Islamic State in West Africa calling on people to be patient:
We are still present everywhere we had been before.
The man speaks in the regional Hausa language, with subtitles in Arabic and English. The video shows the militants attacking a security checkpoint, seizing weapons, and slitting the throat of a man dressed in a police uniform.
Sends 800 troops
Benin’s President Boni Yayi announces he will send 800 troops to join a new multinational force tasked with fighting Boko Haram militants after meeting with Buhari. Troops for the multinational force, which includes soldiers from Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger and Chad as well as Benin, are set to be deployed at any time, according to its commander Major General Abbah. The force, made up of 8,700 troops and headquartered in Chad, is expected to help with better coordination of the regional offensive.
Responds to Buhari
Senator Leahy, in a statement titled, Buhari’s Mis-Directed Criticism of the Leahy Law on Human Rights, says President Buhari should clean up military units allegedly implicated in atrocities in order to get more military support from US instead of rebuking the Leahy Law. He charges Buhari to direct his attention to and clean up the units implicated in such atrocities.
It is well documented by the State Department and by respected human rights organisations that Nigerian army personnel have, for many years, engaged in a pattern and practice of gross violations of human rights against the Nigerian people and others, including summary executions of prisoners, indiscriminate attacks against civilians, torture, forced disappearances and rape. Rarely have the perpetrators been prosecuted or punished. This abusive conduct not only violates the laws of war, it creates fear and loathing among the Nigerian people whose support is necessary to defeat a terrorist group like Boko Haram. President Buhari ignores the undisputed fact that most Nigerian army units have been approved, under the Leahy Law, for U.S. training and equipment. Only those particular units against which there is credible evidence of the most heinous crimes are ineligible for U.S. aid. And even those units can again become eligible if the Nigerian Government takes effective steps to bring the responsible individuals to justice.
I strongly agree with President Buhari about the need to defeat Boko Haram, and I have supported tens of millions of dollars in U.S. aid to Nigeria for that purpose. But rather than suggest that the United States is at fault for not funding murderers and rapists in the Nigerian military, he should face up to his own responsibility to effectively counter Boko Haram.
Claims Leahy law aids Boko Haram
Buhari says the US Leahy Law, which prohibits the US Department of State and Department of Defence from providing military assistance to foreign military units that violate human rights, aids Boko Haram. He says that the blanket application of the Leahy Law by the US on the grounds of unproven allegations of human rights violations levelled against the Nigerian Armed forces denies the country access to appropriate strategic weapons to prosecute the war against the insurgents.
In the face of abduction of innocent school girls from their hostels, indiscriminate bombings of civilians in markets and places of worship, our forces have remained largely impotent because they do not possess the appropriate weapons and technology, which they could have had, had the so-called human rights violations not been an obstacle. Unwittingly, and I dare say, unintentionally, the application of the Leahy law amendment by the US government has aided and abetted the Boko Haram terrorist group in the prosecution of its extremist ideology and hate, the indiscriminate killings and maiming of civilians, in raping of women and girls, and in their other heinous crimes. I believe this is not the spirit of the Leahy Laws. I know the American people cannot support any group engaged in these crimes.
19 fighters killed
At least 19 Boko Haram fighters and two Chadian soldiers are killed in combat after the insurgents attack a Chadian village. Chad security:
Boko Haram attacked the post of Konguia at around five in the morning, the army responded, killing 19 Boko Haram members. A soldier died and the attackers fled to Nigeria.
An elderly woman and a ten-year-old girl are identified as being behind the blasts at a screening area for Eid prayers in Damaturu, just as prayers get underway to mark the end of the month-long Ramadan fast. Four persons die in the first explosion and seven people are injured, while five people lose their lives in the second explosion and 11 are wounded. Official:
Troops and security agencies responded immediately. The situation is under control. Both Yobe State Governor and the Chief of Army Staff, sympathise with and urged the people to stay calm and be security conscious.