Advertisement

African Union Summit to address Boko Haram threat

By JC Finley
African Union Summit to address Boko Haram threat
African Union Commission Chairwoman Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma greets the press as she arrives at the White House for a State Dinner on behalf of the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit last August. File photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- As African Union heads of state prepare for their summit Friday, AU Chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma announced that Boko Haram would be a focus of the agenda.

"I am deeply horrified by the tragedy Boko Haram continues to inflict on our people, kidnapping young girls from school, torching villages, terrorizing whole communities and the senseless killing," Dlamini Zuma said ahead of the two-day summit.

Advertisement

"We must act now, and act collectively against this progressing threat," she added.

Despite the AU chair's rallying cry, one Nigerian official has played down the need for such outside assistance.

National Security Adviser Sambo Dasuki told the BBC that while Boko Haram poses a "real security threat," there is no need to deploy United Nations or AU troops, insisting that Nigeria and its neighbors were in "good shape" to confront the militants.

Nigeria has welcomed military assistance from some of its neighbors, including Chad.

"These attacks are an urgent wake-up call for the Nigerian leadership, the African Union and the international community," said Amnesty International's Netsanet Belay. "It is essential to protect hundreds of thousands of civilians in northeast Nigeria from Boko Haram's continued onslaught."

Advertisement

Boko Haram began a campaign of terrorism in Nigeria in 2009, attempting to create an Islamic state and to deny Western-style education. Thousands of people have been killed, mostly in northeastern Nigeria since the attacks began. The United States declared it a terrorist group in 2013.

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement