31 August 2011
When a suicide bomber drove into the U.N. building in Abuja
's leafy diplomatic quarter on Friday, detonating his Honda Accord and killing at least 18 people, an Islamist terrorist group that was little known outside Nigeria violently thrust itself onto the international stage.
Until recently, the group Boko Haram has conducted attacks on Nigerian government targets in what most terrorism experts considered an indigenous campaign to further the organization
's aim of installing Islamic law in West Africa 's most volatile country.
's attack now has officials and experts worrying that a branch of al-Qaeda has spread its influence to Nigeria, Africa 's most populous country and a key supplier of oil for the and the world market. Though no evidence of a partnership has been established, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the terrorist giant U.S. 's arm in northwest Africa, has previously issued statements in support of Boko Haram.