July 16, 2018

AFP: Hundreds of Nigerian troops missing after Boko Haram overruns base

July 15th, 2018

AFP

The AFP interviewed Yan St-Pierre on the hundreds of missing Nigerian troops after Boko Haram overran a military base in the northeast.

The sophisticated attacks highlight the continued threat – and evolution – of Boko Haram, an Islamic State group ally, said Yan St-Pierre, counter-terrorism advisor and head of the Berlin-based Modern Security Consulting Group. St-Pierre suggested the attacks could be because Boko Haram fighters are vying for control of the faction led by Abubakar Shekau, the long-time jihadist leader who is reportedly ill. “When a near-mythical leader is on his way out there’s always a battle to establish who could be next,” said St-Pierre. The attacks show the persistent threat of Boko Haram in the Lake Chad region, he said. As the jihadists exploit rampant poverty in the region, the Nigerian army, which is overstretched and under-resourced, struggles to keep the insurgency in check. “The supply of Boko Haram fighters is always there, either through kidnapping or economic reasons, they tap into a wide pool of personnel, they find a way to replenish their strength,” St-Pierre said.

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