Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

4/17/2014 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Kidnappings, murders, bombing - nothing could be put past this band of thugs

Boko Haram, whose name means that "Western education is sin" in the native Hausa language of Nigeria, has leaped once again into international headlines with the abduction of more than 100 schoolgirls. The group has bombed schools, churches and mosques; kidnapped women and children and assassinated politicians and religious leaders alike. Where did this vile organization come from? What are their goals?

Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Boko Haram has escalated the violence. The group murdered and kidnapped Westerners and started a bombing campaign that targeted churches, mosques and government buildings.

Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Boko Haram has escalated the violence. The group murdered and kidnapped Westerners and started a bombing campaign that targeted churches, mosques and government buildings.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/17/2014 (11 months ago)

Published in Africa

Keywords: Boko Haram, insurgency, Nigeria, Abubakar Shekau


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Boko Haram says its aim is to impose a stricter enforcement of Sharia law across Africa's most populous nation. Nigeria is split between a majority Muslim north and a mostly Christian south. Attacks by the Boko Haram have intensified over the past several years. There are goals have reached as far as to plot the overthrow of the Nigerian government.

The group was founded 12 years ago by Mohammed Yusuf, a fundamentalist Islamist cleric who called for a pure Islamic state in Nigeria. Killed by the police in 2009, the incident was captured on video and posted to the Internet. Some say this only made Boko Haram even more violent and defiant.

Check out our fine selection of Bibles -- by going here!

Abubakar Shekau took control of the group afterwards and escalated the violence. The group murdered and kidnapped Westerners and started a bombing campaign that targeted churches, mosques and government buildings.

Abubakar Shekau remains elusive. It's not known if he's either dead or alive. Even his exact age is remains a mystery. Estimates range between 35 and 44 years of age.

The Nigerian military touted his death, only to retract its claim after he appeared alive and vibrant in propaganda videos.

Using the alias Darul Tawheed, analysts describe him as a ruthless loner and master of disguise. He does not speak directly with members, opting to communicate through a few select confidants.

There's a very good reason as to why the west should be concerned. "Our strength and firepower is bigger than that of Nigeria. Nigeria is no longer a big deal to us, as far as we are concerned. We will now comfortably confront the United States of America," he said in a release last year.

Most curiously, despite its supposed religious fanaticism, Boko Haram does not consider all Muslims as supporters and allies.

The group attacks certain mosques as members have spoken out against them. The group attacks are aimed at striking fear at the heart of the local population to prevent cooperation with the government, analysts say.

Although the northern populace of Nigeria mostly abhors the violence, there is considerable local sympathy and support for Sharia law, seen by many as the only way to end what is widely regarded as a corrupt and inept government.

Poverty is prevalent in the northern region, and as the military struggles to halt Boko Haram's attacks, the militant group is winning perhaps its most important battle: making Nigerians question government competency.

The United States has since put a $7 million bounty on Shekau's head and has also designated Boko Haram as a foreign terrorist network. Although it has provided technical and financial support to the Nigerian teams battling the insurgency, there has been a reluctance to put boots on the ground unless there's a direct national security threat to the West. Boko Haram's attacks have been limited primarily to Nigeria.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Africa

CHILLING VIDEO: Al-Shabaab terror group films mass slaughter of civilians on Somali beach Watch

Image of In the video, several of the victims stare sorrowfully into the camera, whilst the others look down at their feet.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Taking a sickening cue from Islamic State, the Somali extremist group Al Shabaab has now filmed civilians, young men being forced into the sea and shot to death in a hail of gunfire. Entitled "In Remembrance 2," the video shows Al-Shabaab coldly executing their ... continue reading


Zimbabwe child brides fight back in court Watch

Image of Across sub-Saharan Africa, 40 percent of women are married as children.

By Emma Batha, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Two former child brides have taken Zimbabwe's government to court in a groundbreaking bid to get child marriages declared illegal and unconstitutional. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Loveness Mudzuru and Ruvimbo Tsopodzi say child marriage, which is rife ... continue reading


Baby girls being raped in eastern Congo in ongoing crimes against humanity Watch

Image of Girls as young as 18 months are being raped and left with horrific injuries in eastern Congo after being stolen from their homes at night, a charity said on Tuesday.

By Katie Ngyuen, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Girls as young as 18 months are being raped and left with horrific injuries in eastern Congo after being stolen from their homes at night, a charity said on Tuesday. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The children, many of them under five, have been treated at ... continue reading


Beheading of 21 Copts by ISIS 'a turning point for the world,' Coptic bishop says Watch

Image of Bishop Angaelos specializes in advocacy and human rights initiatives.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Speaking at panel, "Sensitivity Rather Than Sensationalism: Western Media Coverage of Human Rights and Religious Issues in the Middle East," Bishop Anba Angaelos, general bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, Egypt for the U.K. spoke out on the ... continue reading


Militants attack Tunisia, 21 killed as hostages taken Watch

Image of Tunisian security forces stormed the museum, where the gunmen and hostages were, killing the two gunmen.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Men dressed in military garb entered a Tunisia museum, opened fire and killed 19 people while taking hostages, ending in a firefight between security forces and the gunmen. The current death count stands at 21. According to Mohamed Ali Aroui, an Interior Ministry ... continue reading


Libyan terrorist sieze nine hostages, two oilfields days before ceasefire negotiations Watch

Image of Radical Islamist groups have seized a number of oil fields in Libya, providing massive revenues for their ongoing war against the Libyan government.

By Kaci Racelma (Catholic Online)

Libyan terrorist groups are wasting no time opening a new chapter of violence, seizing two oil fields earlier this month before taking nine foreigners hostage. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Islamic militants took Al-Bahi and Al-Mabrouk oilfields on March 3, ... continue reading


Nigerian terror group Boko Haram pledges allegiance to ISIS Watch

Image of The recording appeared to be authentic. Jacob Zenn, an expert on the terror group said that while other messages have been faked, the speaker in this one is Shekau.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Evil compliments evil, evidently. Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has officially pledged their allegiance to Islamic State on an online audio recording posted to the Internet this past weekend. The message came from Boko Haram's alleged leader, Abubakar ... continue reading


Christian monks in Egypt face death by bulldozer to cries of 'Allahu Akbar!' Watch

Image of Coptic monks lie before bulldozers as workers chant

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Coptic monks in Egypt are facing death by bulldozer as road workers chanting "Allah Akbar!" plan to bulldoze an ancient Christian site to construct a road. To protest the project, monks have laid before the bulldozers. So far, no lives have been lost, but a great risk ... continue reading


Terrifying Ebola-styled outbreak may affect nearly 30 countries Watch

Image of It is now critical to bolster the health systems of other poor countries so they can deal with any Ebola-style outbreak.

By Joseph D'Urso, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Almost 30 countries around the world are "highly vulnerable" to an Ebola-style epidemic, with Somalia, Chad, Nigeria, Afghanistan and Haiti most at risk, a major charity said on Tuesday. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - An increasingly mobile global population ... continue reading


Beaten to death and set on fire, Nigerian girl accused of being a Boko Haram suicide bomber Watch

Image of A second suspected teenage girl, also accused of being a suicide bomber was later arrested at the Muda Lawal market.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Suspected of being a suicide bomber with Boko Haram, a teenage girl was beaten to death, and then set on fire in a Nigerian vegetable market. A second suspected teenage girl, also accused of being a suicide bomber was later arrested at the Muda Lawal market, ... continue reading


All Africa News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 42:1-7
1 Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one in ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 27:1, 2, 3, 13-14
1 [Of David] Yahweh is my light and my salvation, ... Read More

Gospel, John 12:1-11
1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus went to ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for March 30th, 2015 Image

St. Peter Regulatus
March 30: Also Peter Regalado, Franciscan reformer. Peter was born at ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter