Boko Haram: Nigeria observes a national day of mourning

Since July 26, 2009, the date of the launch of the Boko Haram insurgency in the country, Nigeria suffers from the operating procedures of the armed group founded in 2002 in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State, by the preacher Mohamed Yusuf.

For almost a decade, in an armed struggle based on guerrilla tactics, suicide attacks, massacres and hostage-taking, the jihadist group has claimed several thousand lives in Nigeria.

It has forced thousands of people to leave their place of residence to seek refuge elsewhere in Nigeria or in neighboring countries. The insurgency launched in 2009 in Bauchi, Kano, Borno and Yobe, the four northern states of Nigeria, marked the beginning of a bloody war between Boko Haram fighters and the defense and security forces.

The anger of Boko Haram

Following the failure of the 2009 armed insurgency, which resulted in the death of their leader, Mohamed Yusuf, and more than 700 dead in their ranks, many Boko Haram fighters fled in Chad and Niger.

From the attack on Christians in Jos, in Plateau State, in December 2010, to the advent of suicide bombers in April and August 2011 – an explosion against the UN representation in Abuja – until the kidnapping, on April 14, 2014, of 276 high school girls from Chibok, Borno State, Boko Haram has long sown terror.

To pay tribute to all the victims of the Islamist organization, several Nigerians from different organizations of civil society and human rights gathered in Abuja Tuesday.

What is criticized by the government

The National Day of Mourning is a time for Nigerians to have a thought for all the people murdered in Nigeria by Boko Haram. People blame the government for failing to protect the lives of citizens, many of whom are killed daily by jihadists or kidnapped by bandits.

Although the Nigerian government claims to have circumscribed Boko Haram’s activities in the Lake Chad region, the resurgence of kidnappings, banditry, and insurgency in the north-east of the country is still a security threat. With the exception of Nigeria, Boko Haram is active in the countries of Lake Chad, Niger (south-east), Chad (west) and Cameroon (north).

Nigeria, with a population of more than 200 million (2.6% of the total world population), according to United Nations estimates, is the seventh most populous country in the world, with an area of 910,770 km2.

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