Nigeria: Measuring The Mali Connection


January 14, 2013: Despite government claims that it has crippled Islamic terror group Boko Haram, the violence in the north continues. Boko Haram has suffered some heavy losses but either the government is not certain of the exact size of the organization or they aren't letting the public know because the violence continues. There appear to be more surviving Boko Haram cells than government reports would indicate. The government is also concerned about Boko Haram relationships with the large number of Islamic terrorists in nearby Mali. The connection has to traverse neighboring Niger, which has been quite hostile to the Islamic terror groups in Mali. Nevertheless Niger has long and loosely guarded borders with Nigeria and northern Mali. The Nigerian government is still seeking to discover just how much Boko Haram is involved with the Mali based Islamic terrorists.

January 13, 2013: In the northeastern city of Maiduguri troops captured Boko Haram commander Mohammed Zangina. Maiduguri has been the center of Boko Haram activity for years and Zangina was known to have been behind several major terrorist operations that were planned and prepared in Maiduguri.  

January 12, 2013:  The air force has sent a technical team to Mali to help the military there deal with Islamic terrorists who have taken control of northern Mali.

In the south (Ogun State) a pipeline exploded in flames while some fifty oil thieves were tapping it and preparing to haul away thousands of gallons of oil. Some 30 of the thieves died in the fire. All this occurred in a rural area of the Niger River Delta, where plundering oil pipelines is big business and often protected by corrupt local government officials and police.

January 9, 2013: Pirates in the Niger River Delta freed three Italian sailors they had kidnapped off a ship last month. A fourth captive, from Ukraine, was not mentioned. Italy would not comment on whether or not it paid ransom. Nigerian criminals know they can get ransoms of over a million dollars each for Western captives.

January 4, 2013: In the north (Zamfara State) seven people died in several incidents of religious violence. In nearby Kano State police found and disabled a car bomb. In the northeast 13 people died in the last two days from Boko Haram attacks.




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