Schlagwort-Archive: Africa

Boko Haram Leader Vows More Attacks On Christians

by Florian Flade

Imam Abu Bakr Shekau – Boko Haram leader vows more attacks on Nigerian Christians

In 2009 international media for the first time reported about a ominous Islamist group operating in Nigeria – Boko Haram. The group whose name is translated from the Northern Nigerian Hausa language into „Western Eduction is forbidden“ carried out a series of attacks, killing dozens of policemen in Christian-dominated regions of Nigeria´s north.

As a result Nigerian security forces took revenge on the Islamists of Boko Haram killing hundreds of the group´s members in and around the city of Maiduguri. Boko Harams leader and founder, Mohammed Yusuf, was captured by security forces. Yusuf had created the Islamist movement in 2002 starting with a network of mosques and Islamic schools to spread Salafi Islam in Nigeria.

Nigerian security forces claimed Mohammed Yusuf was killed during his arrest. Video footage which emerged several days after the raid on Boko Haram showed Mohammed Yusuf alive in custody being interrogated. He was shot dead by Nigerian soldiers and policemen, his body was also seen in videos released later.

While Nigeria´s government declared Boko Haram to be finished the movement re-grouped and emerged even more dangerous than previously. Hundreds of Boko Haram members were freed from prison by a large group of Islamists in 2011. Since then dozens of attacks – including suicide bombings – have been carried out by Boko Haram against Christians, Nigerian police and military targets.

U.S. intelligence officials are warning of a emerging threat posed to Western interests by Boko Haram. The group has been labeled a terrorist group which might seek to establish close ties with Al-Qaida and its African branches in the Maghreb and in Somalia.

In fact there are unconfirmed reports of Boko Haram members being trained as terrorists in Somalia by the Islamist organization Al-Shabaab. Other reports claim foreign terrorists are establishing training camps in Nigeria, importing bomb-building know-how and ideology to the Nigerian Muslim communities.

A few days ago a video message by a Boko Haram leader to the Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan was posted on Youtube. The man seen in the video was thought to be dead, killed in the 2009-crackdown on Boko Haram – the group´s spiritual leader Imam Abu Bakr Shekau.

„All these things you have been seeing happening, it is Allah who has been doing it because you refuse to believe in him and you misuse his religion, Jonathan“, the Islamist leader says vowing the Boko Haram would never be defeated by Nigeria´s security forces.

„Christians, everyone knows what they have done to us and the Muslims (…)“, Shekau further stated, „We decided to attack them and defend us, because we are on the right path (…) Everyone knows how our leader (Muhammad Yusuf) was killed and everyone knows how Muslims were killed.“

Abu Bakr Shekau promises more attacks on Christians in Nigeria, highlighting why the situation in Nigeria has come to this point in his opinion: „The disaster is caused by disbelief, discomfort is disbelief, injustice is disbelief, democracy and the Constitution is disbelief.“

Friends of Gaddafi

George W.Bush, Tony Blair, Silvio Berlusconi, Gordon Brown, Nicolas Sarkozy – they all shared a common friend, someone who had turned from hated, shunned terrorist-supporter to a reformed new ally of the West: Libyan leader Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi.

Newsweek´s Christopher Dickey wrote in his latest piece „Can Buy Me Love“ about the story of Al-Gaddafi´s relationship with the Western political leaders and how he – despite hostages takings and calls for Jihad against Switzerland – managed to become one of the most celebrated ensnared African leaders, buying new friendships with oil money and promises of fighting al-Qaida and the steady stream of immigrants rushing to the shores of Europe.

Read „Can Buy Me Love“ here

New Bin Laden Audio to France: „You Will Pay a High Price“

by Florian Flade


A new audio tape by Al-Qaida leader Osama Bin Laden has been broadcasted by Al-Jazeera today. The message „From Osama Bin Laden to the French People“ is directed to France and its President Sarkozy. Bin Laden calls for French troops to be withdrawn from Afghanistan. Otherwise he says, al-Qaida will kill French hostages they are holding. The fate of French hostages in Northwest Africa is linked to French policies, Bin Laden states.

„President Nicolas Sarkozy’s refusal to remove his forces from Afghanistan is nothing but a green light to kill the French hostages,“ Bin Laden says in the newest tape. „But we will not do that at the time that he determines to try and finish off with the repercussions of his position, which will cost him dearly inside and outside of France.“

Bin Laden goes on by saying: „We repeat the same message to you: The release of your prisoners in the hands of our brothers is linked to the withdrawal of your soldiers from our countries.“ France with „its doubt and budget deficit does not need a new front“, the al-Qaida leader warns.

Friday´s audio message is the second one in which Osama Bin Laden talks about French hostages held by al-Qaida. Although this time he does not explicitly mention the Niger hostages held by Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, there is no doubt Bin Laden highlights the five French nationals kidnapped in West-Africa.

French hostages held by al-Qaida in Niger

In September 2010 seven workers of a French company including five French nationals where kidnapped in Niger. Al-Qaida´s North-African branch AQIM claimed responsibility and released pictures and audio tapes of the hostages. The group demanded the release of Muslim prisoners in France as well as a rescission of the Burqa-ban imposed in France in 2010. AQIM said the fate of the hostages is determined by the decision of the al-Qaida leadership. France should negotiate the release of its citizens with Bin Laden, AQIM said.

Recently two Frenchmen were kidnapped by AQIM from a restaurant in Niger. Both men were killed in a rescue attempt by French Special Forces.

Two French journalists are being held hostage by the Taliban since December 2009 when they were abducted in eastern Afghanistan. In video messages released by the Taliban, the journalists called upon President Sarkozy to meet the demands of the kidnappers.

Bin Laden´s new tape is a clear indiciation the al-Qaida leader wants to proof the small leadership of al-Qaida Central in the Afghanistan-Pakistan tribal area is still in control of the whole organization. He responds to the North-African al-Qaida´s messages and therefore integrates the AQIM-branch into the network. The picture Bin Laden would like to present with this and previous tapes is:

1. The overseas branches of al-Qaida act according to the organization´s overall agenda of global jihad against the US, Israel and their interests and partners as well as against the traitor regimes of the Muslim world – but al-Qaida Central is still in control of the detail decisions.

2. The fate of French hostages in far-away Niger is decided by Bin Laden himself in the mountains of Waziristan. He as the leader and founder of Al-Qaida is still in charge of the network.

3. „It is all up to you“ – he points towards France´s President and explains his refusal of withdrawing troops from Muslim lands will result in the execution of French hostages. This way Bin Laden plays the ball to the French government which followed a very clear line in the past of not negotiating with al-Qaida. Rather France is still trying to use its military might (special forces in North-West-Africa) to rescue kidnapped French citizens. With his statement Bin Laden tells the French leader: you will have the blood of your citizens on your hand.