Saturday, January 28, 2012

Jos fears imminent Boko Haram attack; Govt considers inviting US troops

African Herald Express
28 January 2012

There is palpable tension in security circles in Jos, the Plateau State capital, on strong intelligence that the Islamist extremist sect, Boko Haram is massing to strike Plateaus State. An intelligence source revealed on Friday that top police officers in strategic positions in Jos are being told of a secret plan by Boko Haram operatives to target Jos city for an overwhelming invasion, similar in degree to the large-scale violence it carried out in Kano on Jan 20, 2012, which left over 200 people dead.


It will be recalled that in a recent message to President Goodluck Jonathan posted on the BBC website in Hausa language by the leader of Boko Haram, Sheik Abubakar Shekau, he said that the sect was at war with Christians because of what they did to Muslims in some of the cities of the North. Shekau specifically mentioned the areas where Boko Harm members are said to be oppressed as Zango Kataf (Kaduna State), Lantang and Yelwan Shandam (both Plateau). He demanded that the only condition for peace in the country was for people embrace Islam and leave according to Islamic injunctions. But an intelligence source has stated that the members of the sect might be targeting court premises and car parks for the attacks.

In a related development, strong indications have emerged that the Federal Government might enlist the services of international intelligence experts and US troops in its bid to arrest the raging Boko Haram insurgence in the country. Investigations showed that the FG was considering the engagement of some United States Marines, who are grounded in urban and anti-insurgency warfare to complement the efforts of Nigerian security operatives.

An intelligence source told one of our correspondents on the condition of anonymity that while the FG was exploring several options to deal with Boko Haram’s threat to peace, the security chiefs had not briefed operatives of any such decision to bring in US Marines into the country to assist their Nigerian counterparts.

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