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ISWAP: US reacts as UN labels Boko Haram faction terrorist organisation

The United States has welcomed the decision of the United Nations Security Council’s 1267 al-Qa’ida and ISIL (Da’esh) Sanctions Committee on February 23, 2020.

The UN added ISIS-West Africa (ISIS-WA or ISWAP) and ISIS-Greater Sahara (ISIS-GS) to its terrorist designations list.

ISWAP, the ISIS affiliate in West Africa, has wreaked havoc in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.

Some of its leaders and members broke out from the Boko Haram sect a few years ago.

State Department spokesperson, Morgan Ortagus, on Wednesday recalled that the U.S. designated ISIS-WA and ISIS-GS as Foreign Terrorist Organizations under on May 23, 2018 and February 28, 2018, respectively.

Ortagus, in a statement, noted that ISIS-WA is responsible for killing hundreds of innocent civilians in dozens of attacks since its inception in 2015.

The statement lamented that ISIS-GS also carried out numerous attacks since its formation in 2015, including the October 2017 attack that killed four U.S. soldiers in Niger Republic.

“This UN designation obligates all member states to implement an arms embargo, a global travel ban, and asset freeze on ISIS-WA and ISIS-GS, actions that will cut the groups off from the resources they need to continue their terrorist activities.”

The U.S. stated that the designation is a necessary step in the global fight to defeat ISIS.

“Despite the complete liberation of ISIS-held territory in Iraq and Syria, ISIS affiliates around the world remain a significant terrorist threat, including in Africa, and the international community must work together to deny them the resources they seek.

“The United States remains fully engaged with our African partners to address security challenges and to advance peace and security on the continent.”

Nigerian forces killed three ISWAP leaders this month.

Recently too, ISWAP appointed Amir Abba-Gana as the new leader.

But Abba-Gana leads a faction, a sign that the sect was not currently united.

The terrorist emerged after the sect executed a top leader, Ba’a Idirisa, on February 9, 2019.

Ba’a Idirisa had replaced Abu-Mossad Albarnawee, a few months ago after infighting.

Both are biological children of late Boko Haram founder, Muhammad Yusuf.



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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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