Nigeria: The Hills Are Alive With The Sound Of Burning Churches

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June 19, 2013: Having been chased out of its urban and suburban bases in the northeast, several hundred surviving Boko Haram members have set up operations in the mountain forests along the Cameroon border. This has included raiding villages in the thinly populated region, stealing cattle and anything else they could use. When they encountered Christian churches they burned them down and killed any clergy they found. The terrorists then moved deeper into the mountains, apparently to set up camps and get in touch with Boko Haram camps known to exist across the border in Cameroon. The army is now visiting the raided villages and seeking the new Boko Haram camps. There are still some armed Boko Haram members in the cities, especially Maiduguri. There they are sheltered by civilians and are difficult to root out.

The army is going to be forced to open up the roads to the cities and shut down many other roadblocks. That’s because all these restrictions are reducing the food supply. Rice and wheat crops are ready to harvest and they will rot if the farm workers cannot get to the fields in time. The cities are not getting enough food from the countryside as it is. Lifting the travel restrictions and restoring cell phone service will make it easier for Boko Haram to resume terror attacks in the cities.

Using the many documents seized during the recent offensive against Boko Haram, the government has sent banks throughout the country a list of people and organizations believed to have opened bank accounts for the terrorist funds (mostly from robbery and extortion). When found, the accounts are to be frozen. Nigerian, and American, intelligence are going over all the names found during these raids, looking for people with any prior terrorist connections. American assistance is largely limited to intelligence.

June 18, 2013: In the northeastern city of Maiduguri Boko Haram gunman entered a non-religious school and murdered nine students.

June 16, 2013: In the north (Yobe state) Boko Haram attacked a non-religious boarding school and killed two teachers and nine students. Two of the attackers were killed by security guards.

June 15, 2013: In the northeast (Adamawa state) the curfew was relaxed as a result of there being few Boko Haram left in the area to round up. Adamawa was the least infested (by Boko Haram) of the three northeastern states the army has been operating in for over a month.

June 13, 2013: In the northwest (Zamfara state) a bandit gang attacked a village and killed 34 people. Non-religious violence still kills more people. The usual culprits are large criminal gangs seeking to intimidate tribal feuds, which often turn bloody. 

 

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