|Nigeria: Islamic State Fortifies Its Position in the Lake Chad Basin|
|[AllAfrica] The death of Lake Chad Basin. It could allow (IS) to consolidate its position in the region through its local affiliate, Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP)., long-time leader of Jama'atu Ahlis Sunnah lid-Da'wati wa'l-Jihad (JAS), has opened the space for a reconfiguration of forces in the|
|Boko Haram fighters pledge to Islamic State in video, worrying observers|
|[AlAhram] A group of fighters from Nigerian Islamist group pledged allegiance to rivals the West African Province (ISWAP) weeks after the former group's leader died, according to a video seen by .|
The video fuels fears that ISWAP is consolidating control of the insurgency in northeastern Nigeria following the death of Boko Haram leader last month. But not all observers are convinced the video is proof that all Boko Haram fighters are ready to join ISWAP.
The groups engaged in a rivalry for years, and if ISWAP absorbs Boko Haram fighters, it could focus attention on attacking the Nigerian military.
Some 350,000 people have died as a result of the 12-year insurgency and subsequent humanitarian crisis, the said this week. read more
The video, produced by Islamic State's official media arm, showed clips of several hundred men, many of whom were armed, gathering in the bush. Several made statements to camera.
"We will unite together to fight the (unbelievers)," one Boko Haram fighter said in Hausa. "What will happen now will by far exceed what transpired in the past now that we're united."
Vincent Foucher, a researcher at the French National Centre for Scientific Research who is an expert on the conflict, said the video adds to evidence that ISWAP was gaining control.
"It is one more indication that ISWAP has won," he said.
Foucher said other indicators of ISWAP's consolidation of power included its claims of attacks in areas that had been Boko Haram zones of influence and a significant drop in violence against civilians in areas where Boko Haram operated.
Bulama Bukarti, a senior analyst with the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, dismissed the video as propoganda, noting that it did not feature senior Boko Haram leaders.
"I think Boko Haram is still very much divided and they will continue to fight each other," Bukarti said.
|Nigeria troops rescue some students after school kidnapping: Army|
|[AlAhram] Troops in pursuit clashed early on Friday with the who had split into two groups on the run, the army said in a statement|
Nigerian troops have rescued two teachers and five students after clashing with who raided a college in a northwestern state and an unknown number of people, the army said on Friday.
Gunmen stormed the Federal Government College in Kebbi State on Thursday, killing a policeman and snatching students and teachers, in the third kidnap attack on a school in less than three weeks in Nigeria.
Security forces "have so far, rescued two teachers and five students after a fierce exchange of fire with the criminals," it said.
It said one female student had been found dead from exhaustion.
Troops also recovered 800 cattle stolen by the same gang.
Police have so far not confirmed the number of missing students and teachers taken from the school.
Heavily armed criminal gangs, known locally as , have long terrorised central and northwestern Nigeria, raiding and looting villages, stealing cattle and kidnapping for ransom.
But since December they have increasingly targeted schools, arriving on s, abducting students or schoolchildren and herding them into forest hideouts to negotiate ransom payments.
At the end of May, seized 136 children from an Islamic seminary in central Nigeria's Niger state. They are still being held.
Nearly 900 children and students have already been kidnapped by for ransom since December, though many have since been freed.
|Death of Boko Haram's leader spells trouble for Nigeria and its neighbors|
|This is after him being alive spelled trouble for Nigeria and its neighbors. Can't win either way, can they? It'd probably spell trouble for them if he was in a long term coma. It would be even worse trouble for them if the stake fell out of his heart and he flew through the night looking for tasty victims with lots of blood to drink, especially if he could find Mina Harker.|
[DW] Several times in the past, Boko Haram leader was declared dead, only to reappear in videos taunting the government of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari. Nevertheless, Nigerian security expert Kabir Adamu is fairly sure that this time Shekau was killed. "Every sort of source that could confirm the information has verified that it is true," he told DW.
|Boko Haram leader is dead, rival jihadists confirm|
|[IsraelTimes] ’s leader killed himself in a fight against rival jihadist fighters from the West Africa Province (ISWAP) according to audio AFP obtained from the group Sunday, two weeks after reports emerged that he had died.|
"Shekau preferred to be humiliated in the hereafter to getting humiliated on Earth. He killed himself instantly by detonating an explosive," a voice speaking in the Kanuri language resembling that of ISWAP leader Abu Musab al-Barnawi said.
The audio was given to AFP by the same source who sent previous messages from the group.
Boko Haram has not yet officially commented on the death of their leader, who waged a more than decade-long insurgency in , while the Nigerian army said it was investigating the claim.
ISWAP described in the audio how it sent out fighters to Boko Haram’s enclave in the Sambisa forest, who found Shekau sitting inside his house and engaged him in a firefight.
"From there he retreated and escaped, ran and roamed the bushes for five days. the fighters kept searching and hunting for him before they were able to locate him," the voice said.
After finding him in the bush, ISWAP fighters urged him and his followers to repent, the voice added, but Shekau refused and killed himself.
"We are so happy," the voice said, adding that Shekau was "someone who committed unimaginable terrorism and atrocities."
|10 facts about new ISWAP/Boko Haram leader, Abu Musab al-Barnawi|
|[THENEWSNIGERIA.NG] His name means "the man from Bornu" in Arabic, but Abu Musab al-Barnawi officially became the leader of the now unified ISWAP/ terrorist group following the death of his former principal, , both of whom fell out on ideological grounds in 2015.|
For Albarnawy, about whom little is in the public space, this is a dream come true, his re-emergence from the fringes and obscurity into limelight. But unlike his former, expired boss, he is not given to hogging the limelight and rhetorics.
Still, many see his re-emergence as a move by the , IS, to unify the already fractured terrorist group and re-strategize.
Albarnawy himself claimed he had received directives from the IS to take over and coordinate all activities of the under one umbrella for easy movement of funds, weapons, and materials. To achieve this objective, ISWAP has taken over all territories under Shekau’s control and arrested 30 commanders loyal to him. Before then, other commanders loyal to Shekau had surrendered to him.
Here are facts on the new ISWAP/Boko Haram leader.
|Islamic State in West Africa Now Dominates in Northeast Nigeria|
|[AllAfrica] The in West Africa (ISWA) has announced that it has replaced with Abu Musab al-Barnawi. Abu Musab "takes over all territories that were under Shekau.|
The immediate replacement of Shekau was a major against the former leader that exhibited 'highhandedness and ruthlessness' against humanity in the Northeast." The announcement also included that ISWA had arrested thirty top commanders that were loyal to Shekau.
It appears that ISWA has absorbed Shekau's faction. A credible hypothesis is that the thirty commanders "arrested" will either switch allegiance to Abu Musab or be killed, with the former alternative the more likely. ISWA is already the larger fighting force: in February 2019 it was estimated to boast around two to three times more fighters (3,500-5,000) than Shekau's faction (1,500-2,000).
Actual numbers — good to know.It should be noted that there is still no definitive evidence that Shekau is dead. The Nigerian government has been careful to say that it is still investigating; no corpse, or even a picture of a corpse that might serve as proof of death, has been found. That said, there has been no statement by Shekau's supporters that he is still alive.
It remains to be seen whether this apparent consolidation of Boko Haram factions will make the movement more lethal and dangerous to the Nigerian state. Shekau's displacement or demise raises the question of what group now hold the more than one hundred Chibok schoolgirls that remain in captivity.
I thought all the Chibok girls had been sold on years ago, along with most of the other girls Boko Haram kidnapped over the years, while kidnapped boys were forced to become fighters. Didi I miss something?It is to be hoped that there might be some movement toward their release.
|Rise of ISIS means Boko Haram's decline is no cause for celebration|
|[EN.ALGHADEERTV.NET] For more than a decade, Nigerian security services and their international supporters have struggled to end ’s brutal reign of terror over northeastern Nigeria.|
I guess we can retire the Boko Haram tag and replace it with ISWAP.
But few observers of the conflict are celebrating — even though it appears increasingly likely that
|Nigeria: How 300 Libya-Trained ISWAP Fighters 'Conquered' Shekau|
|[AllAfrica] Over 300 fighters loyal to theWest Africa Province (ISWAP) trained in Libya and other countries joined their colleagues in the long battle that led to the final fall of leader,|
|Nigeria's military investigates reports of Boko Haram leader's death|
|[REUTERS] Nigeria's military is investigating reports that the leader of Islamist group may have been killed or seriously injured following with rival jihadists, an army said on Friday.|
has been the figurehead of an Islamist insurgency that has since 2009 killed more than 30,000 people, forced around 2 million people to flee their homes and spawned one of the world's worst humanitarian crises.
A number of reports published on Thursday in Nigeria media, citing intelligence sources, said Shekau was seriously hurt or killed after his clashed with members of in West Africa Province (ISWAP), which broke away from his group in 2016.
has been unable to independently verify the claims.
A Nigerian Army , Mohammed Yerima, said the military were investigating.
"It's a rumour. We are investigating it. We can only say something if we confirm it," said the .
Shekau was said to have been killed on several occasions over the last 12 years, including in announcements by the military, only to later appear in a video post.
ISWAP was previously part of Shekau's Islamist group before its split five years ago, pledging allegiance to Islamic State. The schism was due to religious ideological disagreements over the killing of civilians by Boko Haram, to which ISWAP objected.
Shekau's death, if confirmed, could potentially end of fighting between the two groups, enabling either to absorb the others' fighters and consolidate its hold on n territory.
|Nigeria's Boko Haram leader |
|[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Nigerian leader has been seriously after trying to kill himself to avoid capture during with rival ISIS-allied in the north of the country, two intelligence sources said on Thursday.|
Shekau’s Boko Haram faction and fighters from the West Africa Province had been battling in northeastern Borno state, where ISWAP have become the dominant force in Nigeria’s more than decade-long insurgency.
Shekau, who made international headlines when his men kidnapped nearly 300 schoolgirls in Chibok in 2014, has been reported dead several times since Boko Haram first began its insurgency in 2009.
After a series of , Shekau and some of his fighters were surrounded on Wednesday by ISWAP miltants in Boko Haram’s Sambisa forest stronghold, where they demanded he surrender, one intelligence source said.
"To avoid capture, Shekau shot himself in the chest and the bullet pierced his shoulder," the source said, adding: "He was badly injured."
So he either shot himself or he exploded. I'll go with exploded.
Some of his men managed to escape with him to an unknown destination, the source added.
That would be The Great Beyond if he did explode.
A second intelligence source said Shekau was critically after detonating explosives in the house where he was holed up with his men.
"Is he dead?"
"I dunno fer sure. All the pieces of him I saw are!"
"We are investigating," Nigeria’s army Mohammed Yerima told AFP by text, asked about those reports.
Shekau’s critical injury or death would be a blow to his Boko Haram faction which has already been weakened by military air strikes on its bases and defections among his men.
More than 40,000 people have been killed and over two million displaced from their homes by the conflict in , and fighting has spread to parts of neighbouring Chad, , and Niger.
Boko Haram and ISWAP have fought battles for control of territory in the past.
ISWAP has emerged as the stronger force, carrying out complex attacks on the military and overrunning army bases.
Shekau took over Boko Haram, formally known as the Jama’tu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad, after its founder Muhammad Yusuf was killed by police in 2009.
Under Shekau’s leadership, Boko Haram turned large swathes of the northeast into a no-go territory, proclaiming a "caliphate" in the Borno town of Gwoza in 2014.
An offensive since 2015 by Nigerian troops backed by soldiers from Cameroon, Chad, and Niger drove miltants from most of the area that they had once controlled.
Angered by Shekau’s indiscriminate targeting of civilians and use of s, a rival faction broke away in 2016 to become ISWAP with the backing of the ISIS group.
Boko Haram leader, Shekau, dead as ISWAP fighters capture Sambisa forest
[PREMIUMTIMESNG] leader, , is dead, HumAngle is reporting.
According to the news platform, the incident occurred on Wednesday evening following the invasion of the terror group’s stronghold in the Sambisa forest area by a column of West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters.
ISWAP, which had broken away from the Shekau-led Boko Haram faction in 2016 after pledging allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS), raided the group’s hideout using multiple gun trucks.
Mr Shekau’s enclave was tracked down by ISWAP using its forces based in the Timbuktu Triangle. His fighters were killed in the process, followed by a long gunfire exchange between the invading group and Shekau’s bodyguards.
HumAngle gathered that after his bodyguards were subdued, Mr Shekau surrendered and engaged in an hours-long meeting with the ISWAP fighters.
During the parley, he was asked to voluntarily relinquish power and order his fighters in other areas to declare bai’a (allegiance) to ISWAP’s authority. They had expected Shekau to issue a statement.
Sources within the insurgency, however, said that Mr Shekau who secretly had a on eventually alongside everyone present during the negotiations.
The identities of the people within ISWAP’s leadership who to remain unclear at this time.
Mr Shekau had been the leader of Boko Haram since 2009 following the death of the group’s founder, Mohammed Yusuf. He had been rumoured to have been killed at least four times between July 2009 and Aug. 2015.
|Boko Haram terrorists attack Kanamma in Yobe|
|[DAILYPOST.NG] Residents of Kanamma in Yunusari Local Government Area of Yobe State are currently taking refuge in the bush as they fled their homes following an ongoing attack by s.|
This is coming barely 24 hours after reports claimed that the Boko Haram spiritual leader, had appointed a new War Commander.
Kanamma is about 200klm from Damturu, the Yobe State capital in . It is also the birthplace of Boko Haram insurgency in the state.
According to residents, prior to the attack, the community saw some Boko Haram fighters but could not report due to fear.