Nigeria Launches 'Massive' Crackdown on Boko Haram

Goodluck Jonathan says recent attacks call for 'extraordinary measures'

By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff

Posted May 15, 2013 10:25 AM CDT

(Newser) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has declared a state of emergency (again; though last time it was just smaller local areas) and launched a "massive" crackdown on Boko Haram, following a series of recent attacks. "I hereby declare a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa states," Jonathan announced in a TV address yesterday, stating that recent attacks were tantamount to "a declaration of war" and required "extraordinary measures."

CNN reports that Nigeria is deploying troops into restive areas to, as a military spokesman says, "rid the nation's border territories of terrorist bases and activities." Boko Haram killed at least 185 people last month, firing rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns at civilians. The move seems to fly in the face of recent Nigerian rhetoric about brokering a peace deal with the militants, Al Jazeera notes.

Imam Abubakar Shekau, leader of Boko Haram.   (AP Photo, FIle)
Nigeria President,Goodluck Jonathan visits the site of the police headquarters bombed by a suicide bomber in Kano, Nigeria, Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012.   (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)
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