Boko Haram Leader Claims Responsiblity for Lagos Blast

By on July 14, 2014

Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, has claimed re­sponsibility for two explosions at a fuel depot in Lagos on June 25, AFP re­ported yesterday.

The police had stated that the explosions were an acci­dent caused by a gas canister.

In a fresh video,which showed about 10 gunmen in front of two ar­mored personnel carriers and two pickup trucks, Shekau stated: “A bomb went off in Lagos. I or­dered (the bomber) who went and detonated it.”

In the video, Shekau taunt­ed Governor of Lagos State Babatunde Fashola, who he wrongly called Adams Osh­iomhole, stating: “You said it was a fire incident. Well, if you hide it from people you can’t hide it from Allah.”

He still seemed to want his soldiers in exchange for the abducted Chibok girls.

‘Girls!!,girls !!,girls!, Jonathan, bring back our army; ‘he stated.

In his reaction, Force Po­lice Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba told Sun’s Crime Correspondent, Christopher Orji that the police authorities are studying the video. “We are studying the motion pic­ture and doing IT and forensic analysis of the picture. It is only when we finish with the analysis that we will authenti­cate the veracity or otherwise of the claim by Boko Haram,” he said.

Shekau also claimed a bomb in a shopping mall in Abuja’s upmarket Wuse II dis­trict that killed 24 people, the third in the capital since April.

“We were the ones who detonated the bomb in filthy Abuja,” he said, referring to a June 25 attack on a popular shopping centre in the heart of the capital that killed at least 22 people.

In the 16-minute video, Shekau also said his loyalists carried out twin car bombings in May in the central city of Jos and a June attack at a pub­lic health college in the north­ern city of Kano.

Shekau mocked the Bring Back Our Girls campaign, which calls for the return of more than 200 schoolgirls Boko Haram militants ab­ducted.

Speaking in English, Shek­au recited the ‘BringBack­OurGirls’ slogan used by the international community to pressure for the release of the schoolgirls. “Bring Back Our Girls…bring back our army,” he says, an apparent reference to the group’s offer to release the Chibok girls if its mem­bers held in Federal Govern­ment’s prisons are freed. He also ridiculed Western edu­cation. Boko Haram means Western education is forbid­den along with “the ideologies of America, England, France, China and the whole world”. He said he will continue to be ‘a huge problem’ for the West and Nigeria.

Meanwhile, Shekau, has voiced support for the extrem­ist Sunni Islamic State (ISIS) militant group, which has tak­en over large swathes of Iraq and Syria, in the new video seen yesterday.

“My brethren… may Allah protect you,” Shekau said in the video given to AFP, listing ISIS chief, Abu Bakr al-Bagh­dadi, Al-Qaeda head Ayman al-Zawahiri and Taliban leader Mullah Omar.

In a related development, Pakistani rights activist Ma­lala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Talibans for campaigning for girls’ educa­tion, has pledged to help free students of Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok ab­ducted by Boko Haram mili­tants.

Malala made the pledge yesterday after meeting with parents of the more than 200 girls who were kidnapped on April 14. Some of the parents broke down in tears as Malala spoke at a hotel in Abuja yes­terday, according to agency reports.

“I can see those girls as my sisters … and I’m going to speak up for them until they are released,” said Malala, who celebrates her 17th birth­day today in Nigeria. She is scheduled to meet with Presi­dent Goodluck Jonathan today.

“I’m going to participate actively in the ‘bring back our girls’ campaign to make sure that they return safely and they continue their education,” she stated, adding: “I can feel … the circumstances under which you are suffering. It’s quite difficult for a parent to know that their daughter is in great danger. My birthday wish this year is: bring back our girls now and alive.”

Taliban militants shot Ma­lala for her outspoken views on women’s right to educa­tion. She survived after being airlifted to Britain for treat­ment and has since become a symbol of defiance against militants operating in the trib­al areas along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

She has won the European Union’s prestigious human rights award and was one of the favorites to win the Nobel Peace Prize last year, although the award ended up going to the Organisation for the Prohi­bition of Chemical Weapons.



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