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President Muhammadu Buhari has said that those who kill the innocent and shout ‘God (Allah) is great’ are mentally unstable people who either do not understand the meaning of such words or are simply ‘deranged.’
He condemned Boko Haram members and other Muslims extremists, who according to him misinterpret Islamic doctrine, adding that “these enemies are essentially an insane nuisance because they revel in cowardly attacks.”
He said that there must be an understanding that the war against terrorism is the most unconventional one, as terrorists do not respect any rules of engagement; kill the defenceless including prisoners, children, girls and consider the killing of anyone as a victory.
The president said this through his Vice, Yemi Osibajo, during a speech at the launch of the revised National Counter Terrorism Strategy (NACTEST), in Abuja.
“Therefore as we think through our strategy we must remember that to permanently win the physical battle, we must win the battle of the minds of even the most impressionable young men who sign up to join Boko Haram and other violent extremist groups.
“We must understand that terrorism is essentially a psychological warfare and as such is psychologically sophisticated and we must educate the youth through the leadership of our faith that neither Islam nor any other religion that we know endorses the slaughter of anyone.
“In the past few years our nation faced the threat of terrorism characterised by mindless killing of our people including children. The massacre of the Buni Yadi boys in their hostels’ at night; the bombing of churches, mosque and market places, the kidnap of the Chibok girls and many others. The sheer recklessness of the killings, the shootings and the executions were meant to terrorise and produce maximum fear.
Read also: John Kerry: How to defeat terrorism in Nigeria
“To further establish the reign of terror in the territory and the terrorists hoisted their terror flags in almost 27 local governments in the north east. Sadly because of the disgraceful deed and the wickedness of some in governance and some in high office in the armed forces at the time, funds meant to equip soldiers to continue the fight against terror was embezzled,” he said.
Continuing the President said, “Since May 29, 2015, we have committed ourselves as a government to the absolute defeat of the terrorists and to quicken and emboldened the morale of our armed forces. But like evil, the vestiges of the activities and the warped ideologies still linger.
“Through personal contacts, social media, capture, and intimidation, men, women and even children are induced, persuaded or forced to engage in acts of terrorism. We must work hard to provide opportunity to educate these young men and women who for years have lacked education and the mere chance of doing well.
“Today as many as are begin released from captivity, we are faced with serious problem of malnutrition, I have asked the Vice President to chair an inter-ministerial team to quickly review the challenges and work with our development partners and other CSOs to handle this particular problem.”
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