In another act of continuing violence, Boko Haram insurgents carried out a coordinated early morning raid on three different villages in the northeastern state of Borno in Nigeria, and killed 35 people on Wednesday. According to military sources, dozens of Boko Haram rebels, wearing military garb led a deadly attack into the villages of Gumushi, Amuda and Arbokko, and terrified the sleeping residents. Using all-terrain vans and motorcycles, the terrorists opened indiscriminate fire on the villagers and set homes ablaze, using Molotov cocktails. As people scattered in panic and ran from their burning homes, the insurgents shot at them, said a local security personnel.
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a military officer reported that at least 26 people were killed in Gumushi alone, while earlier attacks on the neighboring farming communities of Amuda and Arbokko saw the murder of nine people and the fiery destruction of several homes. Josiah Ali, a resident of Arbokko said that the gunmen fired on people as they ran out of their burning homes. At least thirteen residents of Amuda village were gravely injured in the attack. While Lawan Tanko, Borno state police commissioner confirmed the murderous attacks, he did not release any other details on the number of casualties or if any Boko Haram insurgents had been arrested.
On Monday, Boko Haram stormed a military installation and a police station in Buni Yadi town, located in the state of Yobe, in the northeastern part of Nigeria, which left 18 soldiers and 15 police officers dead, the sources said.
Suspected members of the Boko Haram group have also been accused of attacking a convoy in northeastern Nigeria on Friday that included The Emir of Gwoza, Alhaji Idrissa Timta, a traditional Muslim emir. Timta was on his way to a funeral when he was shot dead, along with two policemen, who were part of the convoy.
While Boko Haram, which means “western education is a sin,” has been unleashing a continuous barrage of violence in Nigeria since it’s inception is 2002, it has recently been in the news for kidnapping 276 young girls from their school in Chibok, in the state of Borno. They are still holding a majority of the girls, who were kidnapped last month, and are demanding a prisoner swap.
Since the April 14 mass abduction of the schoolgirls, Boko Haram or The Congregation of the People of Tradition for Proselytism and Jihad, has killed over 500 people. While the group is largely known as being Islamist in nature, Boko Haram has attacked mosques and has not spared people of the Islamic faith, who have criticized them. The violent organization seeks to establish a “pure” Islamic state ruled by sharia, a body of Islamic law, and put a stop to what it calls “western influence” on Nigerian lives. Nigeria is Africa’s most populous country and is divided into a majority Muslim north and a mostly Christian south.
Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan said on Thursday that he had ordered a full-scale operation against Boko Haram and their continuous perpetration of violence in the country. The Nigerian government has been attempting to tackle the rising violence of Boko Haram through military offensives but the terrorist organization has been running a campaign of terror through the country, as it fights to reinstate an ancient Islamic caliphate in northern Nigeria.
By Monalisa Gangopadhyay