US to help Nigeria fight Boko Haram.
(AFP) - The United States plans to work with the Nigerian army to help it combat the threat of the Islamist group Boko Haram which is spreading violence in the west African nation, officials said Tuesday.
But Washington has still not decided whether to put the group on a blacklist of terrorist organizations -- even as gunfire and explosions erupted in the Nigerian city of Maiduguri on Tuesday.
"This is an issue of ongoing internal deliberations within the United States government," Assistant Secretary of African Affairs Johnnie Carson said after two days of high-level talks with Nigerian officials in the US capital. ...
Meanwhile, Nigerian forces shot dead 16 suspected militants in a fire fight with Islamist sect Boko Haram on Tuesday, the military said. BBC: 'Nigerian security forces have shot dead 16 suspected militants from the Islamic sect Boko Haram in the north-eastern city of Maiduguri, officials say. They were killed in a fierce gunfight overnight, witnesses say. They say civilians were hit by stray bullets in the fighting, which lasted for hours. The army says none of soldiers died. ...' See also Morning Report from June 4.
"Who is Boko Haram?" Africa In Transition:
Ostensibly a radical Islamic movement, what are its goals? Who are its leaders? Is it a part of the international jihad dominated by Al Qaeda?
Some within the U.S. federal government see Boko Haram as a direct threat to the United States and are urging that it be designated a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO.) Others see its focus as primarily within Nigeria with little international dimension. ...
The AIT article recommends this article by the US Institute of Peace.