US warns of ISIS, al-Qaeda’s plans to penetrate Southern Nigeria
The United States Government has alerted the Federal Government of Nigeria to plans by international terror groups, ISIS and al-Qaeda to make inroads into Southern Nigeria.
According to a report by TheCable, Commander of the US Special Operations Command, Africa (SOCAFRICA), Dagvin Anderson, disclosed this during a media briefing.
The Brigadier-General, who disclosed that the al-Qaeda group has started to penetrate North-West Nigeria, assured that the command would continue to share intelligence with Nigeria to enable the nation to understand what the extremists are up to.
“We have engaged with Nigeria and continue to engage with them in intel sharing and in understanding what these violent extremists are doing.
“And that has been absolutely critical to their engagements up in the Borno state and into an emerging area of northwest Nigeria that we’re seeing al-Qaida starting to make some inroads in.
“So, this intelligence sharing is absolutely vital and we stay fully engaged with the government of Nigeria to provide them an understanding of what these terrorists are doing, what Boko Haram is doing, what ISIS-West Africa is doing, and how ISIS and al-Qaida are looking to expand further south into the littoral areas.”
He explained that the terror organisations have proved to be resilient groups capable of bouncing back after excruciating defeats.
“We as a community of international nations, keep thinking we have defeated them or we have put them on their back foot and that they’re just moments from disintegration.
“I think after 20 years we have seen they are very resilient organisations that, although small, they’re able to leverage social media and other forms of media to have an outsized voice and that they continue to recruit and they continue to find opportunities,” The US general noted.
He stated that the Nigerian government must take the lead if international efforts to end terrorism in West Africa must yield the desired fruits.
“When it comes to Nigeria in general, Nigeria, obviously, is a critical nation to West Africa. It is a critical nation and we realize that Nigeria is a lynchpin,” Anderson said.