Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Nigerian 'trained in Afghanistan

A member of the Nigerian Islamist sect behind a deadly uprising in July has confessed to receiving military training in Afghanistan, police say. The member of the sect known locally as Boko Haram and Taliban said he had been paid $5,000 (£3,000) to do the training and promised $30,000 on his return. The uprising in northern Nigeria left some 700 people dead, mostly militants. If confirmed it will be the first proven link between Islamists in the oil-rich country and Afghanistan. For years Western diplomats have feared a al-Qaeda sleeper cell might launch attacks on oil infrastructure in Nigeria, which is increasingly large supplier for the US.
Weapons cache
The man was shown to the public in the Borno state capital Maiduguri, where the sect was based and which saw the worst violence. The police also displayed a large cache of weapons and bomb-making equipment recovered from suspected Boko Haram members recently arrested in the northern cities of Yola and Maiduguri. Last month the Boko Haram militants, armed mainly with machetes, launched the simultaneous attacks on police stations in different parts of the north. Hundreds of them were killed as the security forces retaliated.
The sect said it was fighting against Western education and believed Nigeria's government was being corrupted by Western ideas. It wanted to see Islamic law imposed across the country.

Story from BBC NEWS:

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