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Who is the Boko Haram?|
Brief description by wiki:
The Congregation of the People of Tradition for Proselytism and Jihad (Arabic: جماعة اهل السنة للدعوة والجهاد Jamāʻat Ahl as-Sunnah lid-daʻwa wal-Jihād)—better known by its Hausa name Boko Haram (pronounced [bōːkòː hàrâm], "Western education is sinful")—is an Islamic jihadist and takfiri militant and terrorist organization based in the northeast of Nigeria, north Cameroon and Niger. Founded by Mohammed Yusuf in 2002, the organisation seeks to establish a "pure" Islamic state ruled by sharia law, putting a stop to what it deems "Westernization". The group is known for attacking Christians and government targets, bombing churches, attacking schools and police stations, kidnapping western tourists, but has also assassinated members of the Islamic establishment. Violence linked to the Boko Haram insurgency has resulted in an estimated 10,000 deaths between 2002 and 2013.
The group exerts influence in the northeastern Nigerian states of Borno, Adamawa, Kaduna, Bauchi, Yobe and Kano. In this region, a state of emergency has been declared. The group does not have a clear structure or evident chain of command and has been called "diffuse" with a "cell-like structure" facilitating factions and splits. It is reportedly divided into three factions with a splinter group known as Ansaru. The group's main leader is Abubakar Shekau. Its weapons expert, second-in-command and arms manufacturer was Momodu Bama.
Whether it has links to jihadist groups outside Nigeria is disputed. According to one US military commander, Boko Haram is likely linked to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), but others have found no evidence of material international support, and attacks by the group on international targets have so far been limited. On November 13, 2013 the United States government designated the group as a terrorist organisation.
Many of the group's senior radicals were reportedly partially inspired by the late Islamic preacher known as Maitatsine. Others believe the group is motivated by inter-ethnic disputes as much as religion, and that its founder Yusuf believed there was a campaign of “ethnic cleansing” by Plateau State governor Jonah Jang against the Hausa and Fulani people. Amnesty International has accused the Nigerian government of human rights abuses after 950 suspected Boko Haram militants died in detention facilities run by Nigeria's military Joint Task Force in the first half of 2013. The conflicts have left around 90,000 people displaced. Human Rights Watch claims that Boko Haram uses child soldiers, including 12 year olds.