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April 27, 2015

Sub-Saharan Africa
Where is Abubakar Shekau?

There is increased speculation about the whereabouts of Abubakar Shekau in the Nigerian media. His last media broadcast was in early March when he pledged allegiance to the self-proclaimed Islamic St…

Shekau Screen shot

June 29, 2018

Nigeria
Mother of Boko Haram Leader Abubakar Shekau Speaks About Her Son

The interview—Falmata’s first—took place in the village of Shekau in Yobe state. VOA notes the village’s isolation and how villagers avoid mentioning it is the birthplace of Abubakar Shekau.

Nigeria-Falmata-Abubakar-Shekau-Boko-Haram-Mother

July 26, 2017

Boko Haram
Boko Haram's Abubakar Shekau: Dead or Alive?

Since 2009, the Nigerian security services have regularly reported that they have killed Boko Haram leader and warlord Abubakar Shekau. However, Shekau, or at least a Shekau-like figure, would then s…

Nigeria-Military-Borno-Boko-Haram

September 20, 2019

Nigeria
Boko Haram Is Back in the Media Spotlight, but It Was Never Really Gone

President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria, on a number of occasions, has stated that Boko Haram is “technically defeated.” The Council’s Nigeria Security Tracker indicates otherwise, and on September 14, the New York Times published an extensive story on the resurgence of Boko Haram. It was accompanied by three pictures on a back page, including one of a child’s scar from an injury sustained during a suicide bombing.

Women and children sit outside the smoke-blackened remains of a building.

September 12, 2019

Nigeria
Tribunal Upholds 2019 Nigerian Election While NGO Report Condemns Electoral Body

On September 11, the Presidential Elections Tribunal rejected Atiku Abubakar’s petition, saying that he had failed to provide sufficient proof of fraud. Atiku Abubakar’s next step is to appeal to the Supreme Court. Defeated presidential candidates in the past have appealed to the Supreme Court, as they are entitled to do, but none have ever had an election overturned.

Atiku Abubakar sits and clasps his hands at a meeting in Abuja.

August 6, 2013

Sub-Saharan Africa
Boko Haram’s Abubakar Shekau: Dead Again?

This is a guest post by Jacob Zenn, an analyst of African Affairs for the Washington D.C.-based think tank, The Jamestown Foundation, and a contributor to the West Point CTC Sentinel. On August 1, N…

A poster advertising for the search of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is pasted on a wall in Baga village on the outskirts of Maiduguri, in the north-eastern state of Borno May 13, 2013.

August 14, 2019

Nigeria
Understanding the Threat Posed by ISWA in Nigeria

The fishing town of Baga, on the shores of Lake Chad, has been devastated by both Boko Haram and the Nigerian army. It is currently controlled by the Boko Haram faction, the Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA). The group is led by Abu Abdallah al-Barnawi, and is separate from, and presumably a rival to, Abubakar Shekau’s faction. Obi Anyadike, a reporter, interviewed eight former residents of Baga who had fled to Maiduguri.

Two women and a man stand by a window and a door of a mosque in Maiduguri.

August 7, 2019

Nigeria
Attacks on the Media Continue Unabated in Nigeria

There has been a string of arrests of media personalities and suspensions of media outlets in Nigeria. Recently, some of the arrests have been related to support for a protest tagged “Days of Rage” and #RevolutionNow, against what supporters consider a failure of governance, but the harassment of media in Nigeria is nothing new. 

A man looks at a newspaper headline in front of a newspaper stand in Abuja, Nigeria.

August 18, 2015

Sub-Saharan Africa
Nigeria’s Abubakar Shekau Is Back, If He Ever Left

Boko Haram warlord and public face, Abubakar Shekau, was last heard from in March, when he pledged allegiance to the so-called Islamic State.  His silence since then led to speculation that he was de…

Africa - Abubakar Shekau

August 1, 2019

Nigeria
Notes From Yobe State on Living With ISWA

From far away it is difficult to know what daily life is really like in an area controlled by a Boko Haram faction. Chitra Nagarajan, a journalist and author who has written for the Guardian (UK), among other publications, recently spent time in Yobe State doing research on gender.

A girl walks past a bull stall on the street in Dapchi.