ICC Note: Recent evidence indicates that Boko Haram's ranks include foreign jihadists, signaling an strengthening of relations between Islamists groups operating on the African continent. Boko Haram is conducting a campaign of terror and persecution against Christians and other Muslim sect in Nigeria in an effort to establish Sharia rule.
10/27/2013 Nigeria (The Toronto Star) - There are extremists from three neighbouring countries fighting in Nigeria’s northeastern Islamic uprising, according to an captured extremist, whose account reinforces fears that one of Africa’s most powerful Islamic militant groups is growing closer to Al Qaeda affiliates.
“We do have members from Chad, Niger and Cameroon who actively participate in most of our attacks,” said a young man presented to journalists Friday night by Nigeria’s military as a captured fighter of the Boko Haram terrorist network.
His claim of foreign fighters indicates the growing influence of Boko Haram, which started out as a machete-wielding gang and now wages war with armoured cars, rocket-propelled grenades and improvised explosive devices in its mission to force Africa’s largest oil producer to become an Islamic state.
Nigeria has a population of 160 million with almost equal numbers of Christians and Muslims.
Boko Haram poses the biggest security threat in years to the cohesion. Of a country already riven by sectarian, tribal and regional divisions.