In the final days of August, the Nigerian-based terrorist group Boko Haram carried out a half-dozen raids on villages in northeast Nigeria, reportedly killing more than 80 people. The United States strongly condemns these attacks.
These raids are just another example of the horrific and indiscriminate violence that Boko Haram continues to use to terrorize civilians in northeastern Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin region.
Governor of Nigeria's Borno State Kashim Shettima confirmed the attacks. According to the Associated Press he said, "I want us all to understand that the Boko Haram crisis is a calamity that has befallen us as the insurgents do not discriminate whether somebody is Christian or Muslim, neither do they have any tribal sympathy or affiliations."
August 27th marked the 500th day since Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls from their school in Chibok. The kidnapping galvanized international attention for the Boko Haram conflict. It is one of many attacks, kidnappings, raids and other acts of indiscriminate violence that continue on a frequent basis in Nigeria, Chad, Niger, and Cameroon. According to press reports, Boko Haram has killed more than 15,000 people since 2009.
Nigeria's new President Muhammadu Buhari recently visited Washington, where he and President Barack Obama discussed ongoing plans to defeat the terrorist group Boko Haram. President Obama expressed his support for President Buhari's "very clear agenda in defeating Boko Haram extremists of all sorts inside his country."
The U.S. contributes to these efforts through a number of security and counterterrorism assistance programs, which provide intelligence, advisors, training, equipment, and logistics. The United States also provides support to the Multinational Joint Task Force, which the Lake Chad Basin countries and Benin are standing up to coordinate the regional efforts to counter Boko Haram.
The United States will continue to support the governments and people of the Lake Chad Basin region in their struggle to defeat Boko Haram.