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
Imam Abubakar Shekau, leader of Boko Haram.   (AP Photo, FIle)
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(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. (Read more Nigeria stories.)

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