Mission Impossible: You can’t get me, Shekau boasts
The Boko Haram sect has released another video mocking the recent regional alliance by Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger to successfully defeat the terrorist group.
Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau vowed in a new video released on Monday that the group would defeat a regional force fighting the extremists in Nigeria’s far northeast, Niger and Cameroon.
“Your alliance will not achieve anything. Amass all your weapons and face us. We welcome you,” he said in one of three videos posted on YouTube.
Troops from Nigeria have been backed by soldiers from Chad, Cameroon and Niger in recent weeks because of increased concerns about Boko Haram’s threat to regional security.
In the second of the latest videos, images of the leader of the Islamic State group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, are shown along with archive footage and a voiceover recalling a battle between British colonial soldiers and fighters from the Sokoto Caliphate in northern Nigeria.
“We never rose up to fight Africa. We rose up to fight the world on the principle that whoever doesn’t obey Allah and the Prophet to either die or become a slave.”
On Saturday, Nigeria, Chad, Niger, Cameroon and Benin agreed to muster 8,700 troops, police and civilians to fight the group, but Shekau dismissed the size of the force, which had previously been set at about 7,500.
“You send 7,000 troops? Why don’t you send 70 million? This is small. Only 7,000? By Allah, it is small. We can seize them one-by-one,” he said in Arabic.
Shekau also directly threatened Chad’s President Idriss Deby, whose forces have attacked Boko Haram in the northeast Nigerian towns of Gamboru and Malam Fatori in recent days.
Shekau’s challenge comes after the United States said on Friday that Boko Haram could face a stronger test against more capable regional forces.
Washington estimates that Boko Haram has a core of between 4,000 and 6,000 fighters but is well-equipped after raiding Nigerian Army positions.
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