Tags: WAfrica | unrest | Nigeria | Mali | UN

Africa Expands Fight Against Boko Haram

Saturday, 31 May 2014 08:20 AM

West African nations announced plans Saturday to increase cooperation with Central African states in the battle against "terrorism", amid fears of Boko Haram's insurgency spreading across the region.

Nigeria has repeatedly said it needs more help from its central African neighbors, including Chad, Cameroon and Niger, to end the brutal five-year insurgency being waged by the Islamists.

In the final communique of a security summit, the Economic Community of West African States  aid it will "establish a high level partnership with Central African States to effectively combat terrorism."

Nigeria insists that Boko Haram fighters escape military pursuit by fleeing across the porous borders of its northeastern neighbors, and some analysts believe senior Boko Haram commanders are in fact based in Cameroon.

Nigeria has accused Cameroon doing too little to help defeat Boko Haram.

The call at the West Africa summit follows a joint declaration of war against Islamist insurgents by Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger at a meeting in Paris.

On Mali, the West African blo urged the United Nations to strengthen its peacekeeping force deployed in the country.

It also asked the UN Security Council to consider imposing "targeted sanctions against the armed groups or individuals who impede the peace process" in Mali.

The Security Council earlier this week urged Mali to implement fully a ceasefire between the government and armed rebel groups following fresh fighting in the northern desert town of Kidal.

Mali was plunged into chaos in January 2012, when the Tuareg separatists launched a string of attacks in the north, which the army was ill-equipped to defend.

A coup in Bamako led to chaos, and militants linked to Al-Qaida overpowered the Tuareg to seize control of Mali's northern desert.

A French-led military operation launched in January 2013 ousted the extremists, but sporadic attacks have continued and the Tuareg demand for autonomy has not been resolved.

 

© AFP 2017

 
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West African nations announced plans Saturday to increase cooperation with Central African states in the battle against "terrorism", amid fears of Boko Haram's insurgency spreading across the region.
WAfrica, unrest, Nigeria, Mali, UN
309
2014-20-31
Saturday, 31 May 2014 08:20 AM
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