Boko Haram Insurgency

[Nigeria, West and Central Africa]

As of 2019, Boko Haram is the deadliest terrorist group in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the second deadliest terrorist group in the world, according to the Global Terrorism Index.  The jihadist group aims to establish a caliphate in northern Nigeria, without “Western” practices such as secular education and democracy. Boko Haram began as an Islamic center and school in Maiduguri, founded in 2002 by Mohammed Yusuf, a well-known Salafi preacher. In 2009, Boko Haram staged an uprising in which Yusuf was killed, and leadership passed to hardliner Abubakar Shekau. Boko Haram has dealt with substantial infighting over the years, with factions sometimes seceding (e.g. al Qaeda-backed Ansaru in 2012, and IS’ affiliated ISWAP in 2016). Since 2009, Boko Haram has killed 350,000 in northeast Nigeria and displaced 3 million people in the Lake Chad Basin region. While violence has decreased since its height in 2014 and 2015, Boko Haram remains a significant threat. If the conflict lasts through 2030, an estimated 1.1 million people will have died from it. 

In March 2021, 35.4% of health facilities in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe states were damaged and either partly or completely non-functional. Notably, a major source of Boko Haram’s income comes from kidnapping and holding aid workers for ransom. The group also profits from looting during attacks, as well as through its control of resources (e.g. fishing grounds around Lake Chad). Such actions greatly exacerbate environmental strife in the region, where Lake Chad—a vital resource for much of the population—has diminished by 90 percent since the 1960s. Overall, conflict and climate change have left 3 million people displaced in the Lake Chad region and 8 million food insecure. The IPC Acute Malnutrition Analysis found 912,618 malnourished between September 2019 and February 2020. These issues are all worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic and economic downturn. 

Surprisingly, considering its horrific violence, Boko Haram leaders present the group as a victim of the Nigerian state. While Boko Haram is hardly a victim, this narrative makes more sense when contextualized within Nigeria’s extensive history of interreligious issues. As Harvard’s Religious Literacy Project details, Britain’s colonial policies encouraged tension within the Muslim community, and between Muslims and Christians. Britain greatly favored the majority-Christian south over the predominately Muslim North. Economically, southern Nigeria fared far better than the North, where Indirect Rule created a system in which ethnic and religious identity determined access to resources. Overall, the colonial period fostered significant ethnoreligious tensions that would later be seen in Nigeria’s civil war and the Maitatsine riots of the 1980s. In this context, Boko Haram frames its violent attacks as a response to Christians’ persecution of Muslims over the decades. 

Historically, Nigeria has dealt with instances of inter-religious violence through force, neglecting other aspects of reconciliation. Scholars such as Alexander Thurston argue that grievances were never fully addressed and perpetrators were not held accountable, preventing true reconciliation.  Today, Nigeria and the rest of the Multinational Joint Task Force Member countries (Niger, Chad, and Cameroon) have relied on militia groups to combat Boko Haram. Unfortunately, as the Brookings institute explains, these militias are likely to contribute to further instability. There are numerous allegations against Nigeria’s military, further weakening the government’s relationship with communities in northern Nigeria. Notably, in 2018, Amnesty International reported that Nigerian soldiers forced women fleeing Boko Haram to “trade sex for food.” Further, Nigeria faces major issues with its treatment of terrorism suspects. The Institute for Security Studies’ (ISS) May 2020 report alleged numerous cases of arbitrary arrest, unlawful detention, and conviction without adequate evidence. A 2019 Human Rights Watch (HRW) report alleged that the Nigerian government has arrested thousands of children (some as young as five years-old) with ties to Boko Haram. Going forward, the relationship between local communities and security forces must be strengthened, and trust in authorities rebuilt. 

Despite the limited effectiveness of the Nigerian military, the Nigerian government, along with the MJTF and supporting Western countries, has made some progress in combatting Boko Haram. In 2021, the Nigerian government reopened terrorism courts to prosecute 400 suspected Boko Haram financiers. It also is preparing trials for 800 suspected terrorists. The G7 committed 276 pounds to support humanitarian efforts in northeast Nigeria. Nigerian offense operations caused over 6,000 Boko Haram militants to surrender. Chibok school, the site of an attack where 276 girls were abducted, has been recommissioned and named “Government Secondary School.” Repatriation of 200,000 refugees from Borno State has begun due to its increased safety situation. Fighting between Boko Haram and ISWAP militants left Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau killed in June 2021. This dismantled the rivalry between Boko Haram and ISWAP, who reconciled after Shekau’s death. This could mean increased support for Boko Haram in northeast Nigeria, which will require continued offensive efforts.


"Insurgence and all forms of evil in a society doesn't describes her as a failure, but vividly shows a lack of love for one another"

Key Facts


Deaths in northeast Nigeria




Kidnapped in the first

half of 2021

Where: Lake Chad Basin

  • Nigeria (predominately Borno State, northeastern Nigeria); Chad (Lac Province), Cameroon (Far North region), Niger (Diffa region)
  • Overall, the majority of violence has occurred in Nigeria (70% of attacks and 80% of fatalities). However, in 2019, 50.6% of attacks occurred outside of Nigeria (ACLED)
  • Some evidence of expansion into northwestern Nigeria (Jamestown Foundation)

Factions:  Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’adati wal-Jihad,  Islamic State West Africa Province,  Ansaru

Amount of Humanitarian Aid Spent: $2.4 billion since 2015 (USAID 2021) 

People in Urgent Need of Humanitarian Aid: 13 million 

Lake Chad Basin Background Information

Population: estimated 42 million (GIZ 2021), 17.4 million living in most affected areas (Plan International)

Major Economic Sectors: 80-90% of the population work in agriculture, fisheries, and livestock (FAO 2017)

  • Herder-farmer conflict is intensifying, as climate change causes land and water resources to dwindle.

The Key Actors

The Situation

Classification: Insurgency

Analyst’s suggestions:

Boko Haram has been weakened after the death of Shekau, but ISWAP and Boko Haram have been joining forces and ISIS militants are also moving into the country. The Nigerian government needs to continue its counter-insurgency efforts in full force, with help from the EU and the US and neighboring countries: Benin, Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. The government has already put suspected financiers and militants on trial, and should continue. Nigerian military officials also should be stationed near schools to combat the amount of school kidnappings. The bandits have been declared as terrorists, resulting in the Nigerian Air Force being authorized to deploy fighter jets against them. However, the bandits are launching an increasing number of attacks and should continue to be treated in the same manner as Boko Haram and ISWAP.

Similar Humanitarian Crises

  • Mozambique Insurgency, Sinai Insurgency, Al-Shabaab Insurgency


More counter-insurgency efforts in northern Nigerian states have led more Boko Haram fighters to surrender. Boko Haram financiers have been exposed by the UAE Cabinet, and Yawi Modu, a top Boko Haram commander, was arrested. IDP camps are to be shut down in Borno by the end of the year, because the Nigerian government believes conditions have stabilized. However, air strikes against Boko Haram militants have resulted in more civilian deaths. Schools also remain closed in northern Nigeria because of the number of kidnappings this year, and ISIS militants are moving into Nigeria from Libya and Syria. Their affiliation with Boko Haram is unclear. Attacks launched by bandits, who appear as motorcycle-riding gunmen, have increased towards the end of 2021. Bandits are now declared as terrorists, resulting in the Nigerian Air Force receiving authorization to deploy fighter jets against them.

Timeline of the crisis

The roots of Boko Haram are traced back to the early 2000s when the founder of the extremist group, Sheikh Muhammad Yusuf, formed Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad. Between 2000-2006, Sheikh was being advised by his mentor Ja’afar Muhmud Adam but had a public disagreement. Analysists and locals alike have long speculated that the assassination of Ja’afar in 2006 was under the orders of Yusuf. Sheikh Yusuf’s reign was short lived as he was killed while in police custody in 2009. The death of Yusuf brought the horrific reign of Abubakar Shekau, the current leader of Boko Haram, despite multiple claims from the Nigerian government about his death.

The first known attack by Boko Haram includes roughly 200 militants, who attack multiple police stations in the state of Yobe, near the Niger border.

The initial stages of the Boko Haram uprising involved the targeted killings of police officers in Bauchi state in Nigeria. The attacks spread to Borno, Kano and Yobe states in Nigeria.

Boko Haram members are allegedly killed during the operation. Additionally, the military destroyed structures associated with the insurgent group such as mosques. During the government response, the police arrest Boko Haram leader Shiekh Yusuf, who then suspiciously dies in police custody. According to the police, Sheikh Yusuf was shot while he tried to escape from police custody. When he was brought to the police station, he was visibly injured on the arm but otherwise looked healthy. Shortly afterwards, the police announced his death. Boko Haram maintains that he was an assassination by the police. 

The announcement from Boko Haram that Abubakar Shekau is the new leader came as a surprise since it was previously reported that he had died during the Boko Haram uprising

50 Boko Haram militants armed with machine guns breached the perimeters of jail in Bauchi, freeing 700 inmates. One hundred fifty released inmates are believed to be members of the organisation. In the process of freeing the prisoners, one soldier, one police officer and two residents were killed while six others are in critical condition.

Coordinated attacks using around 70 suspected Boko Haram militants kill eight people, including four police officers, in Damboa, Borno State, near the border with Chad. They targeted a police station, a police barrack and a bank

Boko Haram militants, using VIEDs, IEDs and armed assault, targeted security forces and their offices, public markets and 11 charges. More than 100 people were killed.

In January 2012, Khalid al-Barnawi and his group Ansaru splintered from Boko Haram. The splintering was reportedly due to disagreement on the targeting of civilians, with Khalid Barwani advocating for western and high-profile targets. Khalid was arrested in April 2016 by Nigerian forces. 

A coordinated Boko Haram attack targeting the police and military, prison and others results in the deaths of 200 people in the city of Kano, Nigeria. Per the Human Rights Watch, this attack is the most deadly since July 2009.

Using three bombs, Boko Haram attacked churches in Kaduna, Wusasa and Sabon Gari killing 12 and wounding 80 others. As a result of the attack, locals began targeting Muslims in the area. Red Cross officials stated that they had recovered at least 20 bodies.

Militants claiming to have allegiance to Boko Haram kidnap a French family of seven at the National Park in Northern Cameroon. Boko Haram releases a video later demanding that the Nigerian and Cameroon governments release jailed members. The family was released less than two months later, unharmed.

The circumstances of what happened in Baga village are unclear since the residents of the village and the military have different accounts. Before the attack on the village, Boko Haram engaged government forces at a military post outside Baga, killing one soldier. The residents of the village say that the government forces, upon arrival, began setting their homes on fire.

Some of the residents drowned in Lake Chad while escaping from the military forces. By the end, known as the Baga massacre, more than 200 people were killed and hundreds more injured. More than 2000 homes and businesses were destroyed. According to the military’s account, only 6 civilians and 30 Boko Haram militants were killed and only 30 thatched houses were burned down. They claim that Boko Haram’s weapons set the homes on fire. Based on a satellite image analysed by Human Rights Watch, at least 2275 buildings were damaged and another 125 severely damaged.

The confrontation between Boko Haram and the Lake Chad Basin multinational security leads to death of over 200 people, including civilians. Boko Haram quickly releases a video claiming that they are not responsible for the civilian deaths

Boko Haram gunmen attacked a government-run boarding school in Mamudo Village in Yobe state, Nigeria, killing 42 people. Most of the dead were students who either died from gunshots or from being burnt alive. Six students were found later hiding in the bushes.

Nigerian military announces they have rescued women and children hostages from Boko Haram in the Bulabulin Ngarnam area, one of their strongholds, in Maiduguri. In the process of saving the hostages, several militants were killed, according to the military.

According to an intelligence report, Boko Haram leader, Shekau, was shot on 30th June during a raid in Sambisa forest, one of their strongholds. The report claims that he died weeks later.

In a video message, a man who appears to be Shekau claims the news about his death is false. He claims the person the government killed is an imposter

In another school massacre, Boko Haram gunmen target the College of Agriculture in Gujba, Yobe State, Nigeria. In a night-time raid, they targeted the male sleeping quarters. The majority of the dead students were Muslims.

A French priest, Father Georges Vandenbeusch, was kidnapped by 15 gunmen from his church in Nguetchewe, Cameroon. It is reported that he was able to alert the French embassy before he was abducted. He is released a month later.

In a predominantly Christian village, Boko Haram militants dressed in military gear raided a village in Konduga, Borno state. The day-long massacre resulted in the death of 121 people

The kidnapping of the adolescent girls caused worldwide outrage, and as a result, the #bringbackourgirls social media campaign began. Henceforth, the kidnapped girls are referred to as the Chibok girls.

On May 5, Boko Haram leader, Shekau, announces that he is planning to sell off the kidnapped girls

In a 12-hour attack, Boko Haram militants armed with AK-47s and RPGs raid Gamboru and Ngala towns in Borno state killing at least 300 people. By the time the militants left the town, the town was largely destroyed with most of the survivors fleeing to Cameroon.

Twin vehicle bombings at a crowded bus terminal and market in Jos, Plateau state, Nigeria claimes the lives of 118 people. The city of Jos is a predominantly Christian city that had seen very few attacks from Boko Haram

In a mission to support the international efforts, the US sends 80 troops to Chad to help with search efforts for the abducted Chibok girls. Most of the US personnel are Air Force crew member, maintenance specialists and security officers for unarmed Predator surveillance drones, not boots on the ground.

UNSC’s al-Qaida Sanctions Committee approved the decision to add Boko Haram into its list of individuals and entities subjected to the targeted financial sanctions and arms embargo list,

The Gwoza massacre happened when Boko Haram militants, dressed in military uniform, stormed a predominantly Christian village in Gwoza, killing at least 300 people. Some reports place the death toll between 400 and 500. Due to the tough terrain and poor cellular connection, it took several days for information about the attack to reach the provincial capital of Maiduguri.

Suspected Boko Haram militants kidnap 20 girls and women from Garkin Village. The new abduction site is mere 8 km from where the Chibok schoolgirls were taken

During those four days where the village of Kummabza was captured, Boko Haram abducts at least 60 women and girls and kill 30 men. 57 out of the 60 kidnapped women and girls escape 17 days later.

The Nigerian army claims that Shekau has been killed by Cameroonian military during a Boko Haram attempted capture of Kodunga, a village in Borno state, Nigeria. The Cameroonian military supports the claim by releasing a photo of the slain leader on social media. This is the third time that the Nigerian military has claimed that Shakau has been killed.

In a video message, Shekau mocks the allegations from the military that he has been killed.

Following a month-long negotiation process between the two parties, allegedly Boko Haram agreed to release the Chibok girls. The government spokesperson said that the kidnapped girls would not be released all at once, but a significant number would be released.

In a video message, Shekau says that the ceasefire agreement with the government had never been reached. Additionally, the video message announced that the Chibok girls had converted to Islam and married off. Moreover, the video stated that Boko Haram will find and kill the unknown person negotiating with the government on their behalf.

A government spokesperson responded to the video, saying that the government is doing everything to verify the claims in the video.

On 3rd January, Boko Haram militants captured the town of Baga and overran the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) guarding the town. According to MNJTF, the militants attacked their headquarters in the town from all directions. During the battle between the two forces, thousands of villagers fled the area. As the battle for Baga continued, Boko Haram militants began targeting civilians directly. Within the five day raid, at least 100 people were murdered and hundreds more injured. Additionally, hundreds of homes were destroyed. According to local and independent reports, at least 35,000 people have fled the region.

In an allegiance video, Boko Haram declares that they are now called the Islamic State of West Africa.

In the audio message, ISIS spokesperson says that the Islamic caliphate has extended to West Africa

A joint Nigerian-Chadian military operation freed Damasak from Boko Haram, who had controlled the town since November 2014. Upon a tour of the town to assess the level of destruction, the mass graves were found.

The military announced that the rescued women and girls are not the Chibok girls. The 234 rescued women join the 216 women and girls rescued earlier in the week. This new push is to save the 2000 women and girls abducted by Boko Haram, based on Amnesty International records.

Gen. Tukur Buratai, the Acting Chief of Army Staff, announced the launch of “Operation Lafiya Dole” as a way to tackle Boko Haram activities in Nigeria. The operation increased military presence in northeastern Nigeria.

Idriss Deby, the president of Chad, announced that the Boko Haram leader has been killed and replaced by another deputy. He claimed that the new leader, Mahamat Daoud, is open to peace talks. It is unclear how the Chadian president obtained the information. Previous to this, there were rumours that he was on the run or even fled Nigeria altogether as a result of increased military operations against the militant group.

Following the messages from the Chadian president regarding the death of Boko Haram, in an audio message, Shekua disproves the claims that he is dead and that he has been replaced.

 A Boko Haram attack on a crowded market and infirmary near a military camp in Kerawa, Cameroon results in the death of 30 people and another 145 injured

The military operation occurred in Jangurori and Bulatori villages in north-eastern Nigeria where the Boko Haram’s camps were destroyed entirely following the recovery of people and weapons. Out of the 43 arrested militants, one was a local leader, Bulama Modu, who the military claims is the Boko Haram Emir, or leader, of Bulakuri village.

Mohammed Mamman Nur, as well as Mustapha Chad, have been designated as terrorists by the US Treasury. Nur is a senior Boko Haram leader who helped organise the suicide bombing of the UN compound in Abuja. He is believed to have funded two unspecified suicide attacks in late April 2012. He allegedly operates in coordination with SDGT al-Qaida in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb. He was briefly detained but escaped from prison when members of Boko Haram stormed the prison. Mustapha Chad is Chadian national part of the advisory council of the militant group. He directed attacks in Yobe state in Northern Nigeria and spearheaded a 2013 offensive to take over Maiduguri, Nigeria but failed.

In a BBC interview, President of Nigeria, Mohammad Buhari states that Boko Haram cannot “conventionally attack” security forces or population centres. He added that the group mostly uses IED to wage their war. Also, he stated that Boko Haram has only a small force left, operating in the heartland of Borno state. He finished the interview by saying that “technically we have won the war because people are going back into their neighbourhood.” These comments from the president aimed to make the Nigerian army and the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) to look like their counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations have been effective. This was not the case; Boko Haram, although still heavily relying on unconventional ways to battle the military, i.e. IEDs, is still a force to reckon with.

Two Boko Haram suicide bombers kill four people at a school in Northern Cameroon. The school was partially targeted due to the high number of Nigerian refugees. Three days before this incident, a Boko Haram suicide bomber blew themselves up at an outdoor market in Kerawa, northern Cameroon killing 32 and wounding 66. The attack was the worst Boko Haram attack in Cameroon.

The two female suicide bombers were between the ages of 17 and 20. The camp they attacked was sheltering Nigerian escaping from Boko Haram’s devastation. Reports claim that there was a third female suicide bomber who did not blow themselves up after she realised that her family was also at the camp. The third female would-be suicide bomber was arrested and confessed the plan, including that two other bombers were on their way to the camp.

A statement by the Cameroonian government says that the Multinational Joint Task Force operation leads to the deaths of 92 suspected Boko Haram militants in Village Kumshe near the Cameroonian border. The operation freed 850 villagers captured by Boko Haram. Two Cameroonians soldiers were killed and five others injured. The statement did not mention whether civilians were killed or wounded during the operations.

The video released by CNN is reportedly the same video sent to the Nigerian military when they were negotiating with suspected Boko Haram militants. According to CNN, the parents of the kidnapped girls were not shown the video.

The arrest of the al-Barnawi significantly affected the operations of Ansari, though they are not entirely defeated.

Amina Ali Nkeki, one of the kidnapped Chibok girls, has been released. Although the Nigerian military claims that they rescued her, witnesses say that she wandered out of the Sambisa forest, along with her child and a man who claims to be her husband. Nigeria’s joint intelligence center is currently investigating the man. 

Sheikh Abu Musab al-Barnawi, a 25-year-old man, is the second son of the founder of Boko Haram, Sheikh Yusuf. This announcement comes after chatter about a three-month internal dispute which led to Sheikh Barnawi to leave the Sambisa forest. A week after leaving the camp with his supporters, Sheikh Barnawi introduces himself as the new leader in an interview with ISIS publication al-Naba. Two days after the interview, Shekau released an audio message disputing the change of leadership claims, adding that the announcement was an attempted coup. Despite the claims by Sheikh Barnawi, the majority of Boko Haram are still loyal to long-time leader Abubakar Shekau. Many analysts claim that the announcement in the ISIS publication is an indication that ISIS recognises Sheikh al-Barnawi over Shekau.

In a video message, Boko Haram demanded the release of their fighters. In the video, the Chibok girls are seen seated behind a masked Boko Haram militant. The militant claims that 40 out of the 267 kidnapped girls had been married off. He also claimed that airstrikes killed some of the Chibok girls by the Multinational Task Force.

Just two months after Boko Haram released a video showing the Chibok girls, the group released 21 girls following negotiations with the government. Red Cross and Swiss Government officials brokered the talks between Boko Haram and the Nigerian government. The Nigerian Minister of Information said that the government did not release Boko Haram prisoners in exchange for the kidnapped girls.

One of the Chiblk girls, with her 10-month old son, was found outside the Sambisa forest, one of Boko Haram’s strongholds. Of the 267 kidnapped Chibok girls, 57 have either been released or have escaped.

Two months later, another Chibok girl and her six-month-old baby were located after a military operation to capture Boko Haram militants.

In an operation in Rann in Northeastern Nigeria, a Nigerian military plane accidentally bombs an IDP camp. The military did not give official figures of the death toll, but Doctors Without Borders put the death toll at 90 people, with another 120 wounded.

According to WHO, one-third of the states 749 health facilities were completely destroyed due to ongoing conflict in the region. Another third of health facilities were damaged. Poor infrastructure and safety concerns make it difficult for healthcare workers to access regions hit the hardest.

82 Chibok girls have been released following negotiations between the Nigerian government and Boko Haram. The girls were taken to Banki town in northern Nigeria. As part of the negotiation process, some Boko Haram militants were released. It is unclear how many militants were released. Like in previous negotiations, the Red Cross was the intermediary between the two parties. Boko Haram still has more than 100 Chibok girls.

Boko Haram militants kidnap 111 girls from the Girls Science and Technical College in Dapchi, Yobe State, Nigeria. The abducted girls were between the ages of 11 and 19. Hours before the kidnapping, the Nigerian military removed a military checkpoint and withdrew troops from Dapchi. The Governor of Yobe state, Ibrahim Geidam, immediately blamed the Nigerian government for removing the soldiers, adding that the girls would not have been kidnapped if the troops remained in the town.

On 21st March, 104 Dapchi girls are released. It is still unclear how many girls were kidnapped and how many still remain with Boko Haram.

In the same case, 562 suspects were also released due to lack of evidence. They were sent to their state government for “proper rehabilitation.”

Boko Haram attacked a displacement camp in Rann, Nigeria using rocket-propelled grenades and truck-mounted guns.  In the process of the raid, 3 Nigerian aid workers, are killed, and 3 International Committee of the Red Cross aid workers are kidnapped. Also, during the attack by Boko Haram, eight soldiers and police officers were killed. The kidnapped Red Cross aid workers were killed on 17 and 26 September and 16 October respectively

A UNICEF report claims that Boko Haram has abducted over 1000 children since 2013. The report says that the militants take the children as a means to spread fear and showcase their power. The news came on the eve of the fourth anniversary of the abduction of the Chibok girls.

In a Multinational Joint Task Force operation in Borno state, the Nigerian military managed to save over 1000 Boko Haram captives, mostly women and children. Fifty suspected militants were also killed in the operation.

The report also says that the Nigerian soldiers are forcing these women and girls to exchange sex for food. The government commented on the report, stating that the military found cases of abuse in some of the camps and appropriate punishment will be dealt out to those found guilty. The government also claims that Amnesty International for recycled previously reported claims.

Reports claim that Nur’s lieutenants killed him following his decision to release 104 out of the 110 Dapchi abducted girls. The report claim that Nur’s lieutenants apparently believe that his approach was too soft.

Ali Gaga is reported to have been killed because he was plotting to escape, alongside 300 Boko Haram captives, and surrender to the Nigerian military.

According to UNHRC, 30,000 people have been forced to flee over one weekend due to the increased threat from Boko Haram. Many of them have fled into Cameroon and Chad. The escalation of attacks has also forced some aid organisations to pull out from some locations.

In an 18-minute audio recording, ISIS replaced ISWAP leader Abu Mus’ab al-Barnawi with Abu Abdullah Ibn Umar al-Barnawi. The audiotape did not give reasons for the new change in leadership

An anti-Boko Haram militia and Nigerian government-backed Civilian Joint Task Force has released 900 children, including 106 girls, from its ranks, according to the UN. At a ceremony dedicated to the freeing of the children, the militia pledged its commitment to end and prevent the use of child soldiers.

Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) claimed responsibility for the attack on the Niger army that killed 28 soldiers. ISWAP claimed that they killed 40 troops, but the Niger Army published the ambushed killed only 28 soldiers. The Niger troops were ambushed near Tango village in Tillarei region near the border with Mali.

Three suicide bombers, two girls and a boy, killed in a total of 30 people and injured 39 others in northeast Nigeria. The exact ages of the three suicide bombers are unknown. The boy suicide bomber detonated his explosive vest outside a cinema hall where football fans had gathered to watch a match in Konduga, Borno state. This attack alone killed at least 24 people. A few kilometres away from the cinema hall, the two girls blew themselves up and killed another six people and injured 17 others. Though no group claimed responsibility, similar attacks have been conducted by Boko Haram.

Military sources say six soldiers were killed in an ambush by suspected Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP). ISWAP opened fire on a patrol vehicle killing all the soldiers on board. Following the ambush, militants attacked a nearby military. The hour-long battle was repelled by soldiers with ISWAP fighters abandoning their weapons and one of the seven vehicles they attacked the base with.


two drivers, and three health workers were kidnapped. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack immediately. Later on, Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) released a video of one of the abducted females asking for her and her colleagues’ release.

On 25 September 2019, Action Against Hunger said one of the kidnapped was executed. The execution of the aid worker comes just days after the Nigerian government accused Action Against Hunger of aiding and abetting terrorists.

Suspected Boko Haram fighters attacked a funeral procession in Borno state in northern Nigeria, killing at least 65 people. The chairman of a local government says that he believes the attack as a retaliation for the killing of 11 Boko Haram fighters two weeks prior by residents of the village.


Two female suicide bombers kill three and wounded eight others in a suspected Boko Haram attack in Mafa town. According to the head of security for the State Emergency Management Agency in Borno State, Bello Donbatta, the two women entered the town among a group of local women who had gone to fetch water and firewood. They detonated their explosions in a crowd.

A suspected Boko Haram female suicide bomber detonated her vest in a compound of a traditional chieftain in Kaiga-Kindjira district, Lac Province, western Chad. The bomb killed a soldier, four guards and a civilian while another five people were injured. Though officials suspect it was a Boko Haram attack, the group has not claimed responsibility for the attack. The group rarely claim responsibility for attacks.

A suspected Boko Haram night raid on the border district of Gueskerou, southeast Niger, resulted in the death of twelve villagers. Gueskerou district has been the scene of many suspected Boko Haram attacks and kidnappings.


Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters kill eleven workers laying fibre optic cables in Wajirko village, Borno state. According to residents, ISWAP had warned the workers to quit the project but the workers ignored them since they needed money to feed their families.

Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters opened fire on a military convoy in Borno state, killing eight soldiers instantly. The convoy was heading towards the capital of northeastern Nigeria, Maiduguri when the insurgents used RPGs and heavy guns to attack the forces.

This attack is part of intensified efforts by ISWAP on Nigerian military and police targets. On 17 August, ISWAP fighters killed four soldiers. Three days later, ISWAP fighters killed five soldiers. ISWAP efforts during these two weeks have not been localised to Nigeria but also in Niger. On 24 and 25 August, ISWAP fighters planted two IEDs in Niger killing one person.

Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters claimed responsibility for an ambush on Nigerian soldiers in Borno state, northeastern Nigeria. Like in previous ambushes, the militants used RPGs to ambush the soldiers. On this occasion, ISWAP killed seven soldiers.

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) report claims that the Nigerian army arrested thousands of children they suspected of involvement with Boko Haram. The report says that some of the arrested children were as young as five years. The children were crammed into overwhelmingly hot and crowded cells in Giwa Barracks, a notorious military facility in Maiduguri. HRW claims that more the 3 600 children, including 1 617 girls, were detained by Nigerian forces between 2013 and 2019. The report also claims that some of the children suffered abuse while in the hands of security forces.

The Nigerian government denies the allegations.

Cameroonian officials announced that six soldiers died and nine others were injured in an attack by suspected Boko Haram fighters. The militants attacked a military post at Soueram near Fotokol in Lake Chad area. Fotokol is a major crossing point to Nigeria.

Nigerian government accuses Action Against Hunger aid group for aiding and abetting’ Boko Haram militants. They claim that the aid organisation is supplying militants with food and drugs. The organisation has denied the accusations, adding that they assist vulnerable people. The government has asked the organisation to close its office in Maiduguri, Northern Nigeria.

The Nigerian army has begun “Operation Positive Identification.” The army issued a statement asking citizens to carry valid identification while moving through Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states.


Mercy Corps issued a statement saying they are suspending its operations in northeastern Nigeria. This decision is related to the government decision to close their four offices in Maiduguri after the government claimed that they aid and abet Boko Haram.

Militants belonging to Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) attacked Nigerian and Chadian troops in Gajiram town in two separate attacks. A local official commented on the incident, saying “we lost eight people in the attacks, including a policeman, a local hunter and six residents.” The militants mounted an attack on pickup trucks with machine guns. The militants were all killed when soldiers launched an RGP towards the pickup.

Suspected Boko Haram militants killed one civilian and injured several others in a raid in northern Cameroon. Following the attack, the militants looted foodstuffs and motorcycles. The militants fled to a nearby village and also looted from the villagers.

Nigerian army confirmed the arrest of 10 wanted Boko Haram commanders in Borno State. The commanders were arrested as they attempted to flee from sustained operations in the state. Some of the arrested commanders are responsible for a devastating attack on Gwoza in 2014.


At least four Nigerian soldiers were killed, as well as one ISWAP militant, following clashes between the two sides in Borno state. The troops clashed with ISWAP militants after they tried to ambush them. Four army vehicles were destroyed in the clash.

In a pre-dawn raid on a military base in Niger’s Diffa region, suspected Boko Haram militants killed 12 soldiers. In a statement, the Ministry of Defense said some Boko Haram militants were killed in the attack but did not specify the number.


Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) ambushed Nigerian military envoy near Damboa, Borno State, killing ten and severely injuring nine others. The ambush happened as the troops were conducting a clearance operation in the area. Following an hour-long battle, the Nigerian military was forced to withdraw from their position. Before retreating, they destroyed one of their trucks and three Kalashnikov rifles. Though ISWAP lost a vehicle, they managed to take a pickup truck from the Nigerian military, as well as six machine guns.

Borno State government has organised a rehabilitation program for 86 Boko Haram child soldiers. UNICEF sponsors the state rehabilitation program. The child soldiers are between the ages of 10 and 19. They will undergo a six months deradicalisation, rehabilitation, and reintegration program.


During a clearing mission in Mandara mountains of Gwoza council, Borno State, Nigerian military managed to rescue seven people who had been in captivity under Boko Haram. The village where they were rescued from was under Boko Haram control since August 16, 2014.

Eighteen civilians have been kidnapped by suspected Boko Haram militants in the Far North region of Cameroon, according to military officials. They were kidnapped as the militants stormed a village where they also looted foodstuffs. The Cameroonian military has begun a rescue mission to secure their release, according to local authorities.


Cameroonian military claims that over 250 militants, some of whom belonged to Boko Haram, have surrendered in 2019. All of them have undergone rehabilitation. In one of the rehabilitation centres, the former militants and anglophone separatists raise pigs and chickens.

According to the ex-militants, more militants are willing to surrender for reintegration but are fearful that the government will arrest them indefinitely instead of rehabilitating them.


According to Amnesty International, at least 275 people in Cameroon have been killed by Boko Haram. The majority killed were civilians – 225 people. Boko Haram is also notorious for looting and burning homes and health centres following attacks. All these attacks come after Cameroonian president claimed on 9 January 2019 that Boko Haram has been “pushed outside Cameroonian borders.”

Some of the interviewed survivors of Boko Haram attacks say they feel abandoned by the government. One interviewed person said that the problem with the government’s strategy in countering Boko Haram is that the soldiers are in the town while the militants are in the bush. Therefore, it takes the soldiers a long time to respond to the attacks.

A spokesperson for the Nigerian Airforce, Ibikunle Daramola, stated that the air force conducted an operation in Borno state. While targeting a Boko Haram camp, at least 30 militants were killed. He added that the camp was a tactical headquarters in Parisa town. The operation also destroyed Boko Haram settlements in Garin Molama town, which is the fringes of Sambisa forest, one of their hideouts.

Local sources reported that 50 people may have been killed in an attack by Boko Haram on an island in Lake Chad in late December.

At least 32 people were killed and over 35 injured when an IED exploded on a crowded bridge in Gamboru Borno State, Nigeria.

Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) claimed responsibility for the attack on its Amaq news agency which led to the death of twenty soldiers. Reuters added that this deadly attack destroyed 750 homes in the process and displaced more than 1,000 people in a town in the Borno State of Nigeria. A resident Gumati Sadu said people fled into the bush for safety during the fighting and that three civilians were killed by stray bullets.


In Northeast Nigeria, three aid workers and other civilians who were kidnapped on December 22 were released by an unspecified militant group. UN humanitarian coordinator, Edward Kallon delivered the relieving news about the health and wellbeing of these aid workers who were captured along the Monguno – Maiduguri road. Talking to Aljazeera, Asabe Musa, a hygiene specialist with ALIMA (Alliance for International Medical Action), a French NGO, was among those freed. He told AFP news agency that he was captured alongside a Red Cross staff and an International Office for Migration worker

The new group-Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) – has been the dominant armed group in Nigeria in the last two years. It confirmed the execution of 11 Christian captives previously kidnapped in Borno State.


A suspected female Boko Haram suicide bomber detonated her explosives in Kaiga-Kindjiria, western Chad, killing nine civilians. It was also reported that insurgents killed four villagers and kidnapped four women around the same area earlier in the month.

The Chadian president called back home 1,200 Chadian troops to Chad from Nigeria to defend Chadian territory.


Boko Haram militants killed four members of the same family in Bosso District, THE NEWS reported. Officials in this district located in the southeast region of Diffa bordering Chad and Nigeria told AFP five people were killed too.

In a separate attack in the southwestern region of Tillaberi, which borders Mali, four armed men on two motorbikes opened fire on workers in the village of Molia, killing four people, a regional official told AFP.


At least 30 civilians were killed and many more abducted by militants in Auno, Borno State, Nigeria. Four soldiers were killed and seven more wounded in an attack on the same village last month.

Boko Haram killed ten in Aksira/Uba, Borno. 

In Kaduna state, hundreds of bandits attacked four villages in Igabi area and reportedly killing 51 Crisis Group said. Almost a hundred armed men attacked the villages of Kerawa, Rago, Zareyawa, Marina, Hashimawa, and Unguwar Barau, all in the Igabi district, shooting residents, and looting and burning homes. A local politician, Alhaji Daiyibu Kerawa, told Voice Of Africa’s Hausa service that the shooters were part of Islamist insurgent group Boko Haram.

Boko Haram continued to target military in northeastern Nigeria, while banditry-related violence has left over 110 killed. Unfortunately three soldiers in Damboa town (near the Borno state capital) were killed by Boko Haram insurgents. However, in Maiduguri, government troops repelled attack killing nineteen insurgents, Crisis Group reported.

In another deadly attack reported by International Crisis Group Nigeria branch, bandits killed eight people in Yar Katsina village in Bungudu area, in Zamfara state.

The United Nations Children’s Fund and the Nigerian Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development are working to reunite the released children with their families. While this is positive news, per the Human Rights Watch, the Nigerian military still denies independent observers access to military prisons, preventing verification that there are no more child prisoners.


Again in Zamfara state precisely in Katsira village, Police Public Relations Officer, SP Mohammed Shehu, said four persons were ambushed and killed by the bandits who came to the community to rustle cows. Many armed men on motorcycles stormed the Gusau area killing eleven Yansakai vigilantes including Bala Maigora a famous commander. Several people sustained gunshot injuries, Reuters reported.


PUNCH reported public statements from Spokesman for the MNJTF, Col Timothy Antigha on Friday announcing the death of Boko Haram and Islamic State West African Province top commanders Mallam Bakura and some of his aides by the he Multi-National Joint Task Force. This attack took place during an operation in Lake Chad, Borno State and was conducted alongside the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole.

Boko Haram insurgents ambushed and killed six soldiers in the Banki area, including two lance corporals, two sergeants, and two privates. Ventures reports that the attack took place in a Borno state community that is home to about 45,000 people displaced by previous Boko Haram attacks. 

Gunmen suspected to be bandits stormed a weekly market in Birnin Tsaba village, Birnin Magaji area, and engaged in a sporadic shooting that resulted in the death of four traders. The Independent indicated two innocent vigilantes were killed during the crossfire by the suspected bandits. Villagers later lynched three Fulani men, out of suspicion that the attackers were Fulani.


Crisis Group reported Boko Haram killed sixteen people in two villages in Maru area, Nigeria. ABC News added, Niger says its army has killed at least 50 Boko Haram extremists after an attack on a military post. The attack destroyed a large number of vehicles and unfortunately left one soldier injured.

The targeted gathering of counter-insurgency operations in Gorgi area killed more than 100 Boko Haram including the top commander. The Nigerian military carried out this attack against the Boko Haram splinter group Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) leaders and fighters in Lake Chad area, Crisis Group added.


ISWAP militants and BH insurgents killed 29 soldiers in their usual strikes. Kidnappers abducted fourteen in Anka, Zamfara. Gunmen killed two soldiers and two others in Bassa, Plateau.


Suspected herdsmen killed one and kidnapped three in Kwande, Benue.
Unpresidented gunmen abducted five in Akoko, Edo. Boko Haram killed ninety-two Chadian soldiers in Boma, Chad. In Niger state, bandits attacked security patrol teams comprising soldiers, police, and civil defense personnel in Shiroro area, Niger State. This attack consequently killed twenty-nine security operatives.

The resurgence of long-dormant Boko Haram splinter near Ansaru in the North West was the result of soldiers ambushed near Goneri village. Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH (dpa) spoke with witnesses who estimated the death toll at between 50 and 75 people.

Boko Haram fighters ambushed the Chadian troops in Bohoma where sadly 98 Chadian soldiers died leaving dozens wounded and military vehicles destroyed. The violence led to the displacement of 170,000 people within the Lac Province gravely affecting agriculture and trade.
Seventy Nigerian soldiers and one hundred fifty Boko Haram militants were killed during a clash in Askira-Uba, Borno.

Strange Kidnappers abducted 23 in Jos, Plateau, the Daily Post reports, citing Commissioner Isaac Akinmoyede.  In response, the State Police Command paraded 23 suspects for crimes ranging from kidnapping, armed robbery, rape, culpable homicide, possession of firearms among others. 

Gunmen killed three in Kajuru, Kaduna. Sectarian violence led to five deaths in Chikun, Kaduna. Nigerian troops killed “scores” (estimated at forty) of ISWA militants in Ngala, Borno.

The New Humanitarian reported two deadly attacks by jihadist groups in Chad and Nigeria which killed more than 140 soldiers within a week. The militants continue to threaten the Lake Chad region, despite reports of fractional fighting and leadership changes because of death and neutralization from the military.
Sectarian violence led to fourteen deaths in Kajuru, Kaduna.

Kidnappers abducted six in Ibi, Taraba. Nigerian troops killed “several” (estimated at ten) of Boko Haram militants in Gwoza, Borno.

Crisis Group International reported the ambush of vehicles near Maiduguri which sent five people down the grave in Yobe state in the northeast, Nigeria.

Air force attacked bandits’ camp in the Pandogari area, Niger state, reportedly killing many.

Niger, Chad, and Nigeria vowed an aggressive massive joint attack against Boko Haram, Voice of Africa reported. Earlier in the week, Chad deployed forces to Nigeria and Niger.

Two Boko Haram suicide bombers killed themselves and ten others in Amchide, Cameroon.

In Nigeria’s Borno State in the Kukawa area, the Nigerian military launched an offensive against Boko Haram leaving 19 of them dead.

Suspected herdsmen killed one in Oshimili North, Delta. The Nigerian troops killed two Boko Haram militants in Ngala, Borno. Gunmen killed four people in Bassa, Plateau. The Nigerien and Nigerian troops killed “scores” (estimated at forty) of Boko Haram militants in Kukawa, Borno. A military officer and three kidnappers were killed during a shootout in Okene, Kogi. Boko Haram killed three in Askira/Uba, Borno.

The Chadian army said that military operations over the past month had resulted in the deaths of 1,000 Boko Haram militants and 52 Chadian soldiers in the Lake Chad area. Sectarian violence led to nine deaths in Ukum, Benue. Bandits killed one and kidnapped 16 in Birnin-Gwari, Kaduna. Gunmen abducted nine in Chikun, Kaduna. 

The Chadian military destroyed Boko Haram bases and collected their leftover material in Bohoma after cashing them back to Nigeria. The operation resulted in the loss of 52 Chadian soldiers whilst two militant Islamist group command posts were destroyed. Official figures estimate, roughly 1,000 militants were neutralized, 58 suspects were taken prisoners, dozens of motorized boats destroyed, and significant arms caches reclaimed. 44 of those imprisoned in N’Djamena for further investigation were found dead after a presumed apparent mass suicide.

Sunday Vanguard gathered that the Fulani herdsmen stormed the church at about 8:30 pm when the pastor was praying and counseling five of his members in the front church hall.

The Nigerian Tribune reported Major General John Enenche’s statement about the Nigerian Military Air Task Force of Operation LAFIYA DOLE disarming Boko Haram terrorists. This entailed the bombardment of vegetation-like structures that were used to store terrorist equipment and house fighters as revealed by intelligence from surveillance and reconnaissance missions.

The Nigerian army stopped a bandit caravan in Dansadau forest, killing ten and rescuing eighteen captives.

Chadian armed forces reportedly carried out an operation against Boko Haram in the Lake Chad region. 52 soldiers were lost and a 1,000 militants killed.

The report showed that a total of 113 security personnel with 77 soldiers, 26 Police officers, and 10 Naval officers were killed in three months (January, February, and March). It also recorded 249 deaths of terrorists and bandits, Premium Times reported. The report covers fatalities in 30 states and the FCT, including the six geopolitical zones in the country.

The Nigerian army reportedly killed 105 Islamic State West Africa Province fighters on the outskirts of Yobe state’s Buni Gari village. Bandits killed fourteen people in Danmusa LGA, ten in Dutsinma LGA, and twenty-three in Safana LGA in Katsina.


Nigerian troops killed “several” (estimated at ten) bandits in Rafi, Niger state. Herdsmen killed five in Kauru, Kaduna. Bandits killed three in Faskari, Katsina.

Four soldiers and thirty bandits were killed in a clash in Zurmi, Zamfara.
Gunmen killed eight in Rafi, Niger state. Communal violence led to four deaths and one kidnapping in Anambra West, Anambra. Nigerian troops killed thirteen Boko Haram militants in Geidam, Yobe.

Nigerian troops killed “some” (estimated at ten) Boko Haram militants in Gwoza, Borno.

Nigerian troops killed three militia in Ukum, Benue. Herdsmen killed two in Aniocha North, Delta.

Bandits killed seven and kidnapped one in Chikun, Kaduna.

Nigerian troops killed eighty-nine bandits in Zurmi, Zamfara. Boko Haram killed three policemen and two others in Konduga, Borno. Herder-farmer violence continued in Middle Belt, including unidentified gunmen.

The twin children of an Islamic cleric were kidnapped in Ibadan, Oyo. Police killed three bandits in Gurara, Niger state. Nigerian Air Force killed “several” (estimated at ten) ISWA militants in Kukawa, Borno.

Bandits killed two in Shiroro, Niger state. Herdsmen kidnapped four in Oshimili North, Delta. Bandits killed three and kidnapped twelve in Kajuru, Kaduna.

Nigerian troops killed two Boko Haram militants in Gwoza, Borno.
Bandits killed a police inspector and one other, and kidnapped six in Birnin Gwari, Kaduna.

A policeman killed a soldier in Bomadi, Delta. Nigerian Air Force killed “some” (estimated at ten) Boko Haram militants in Gwoza, Borno.

Pirates kidnapped ten off the coast of Lagos. Bandits killed three in Kankara, Katsina. Bandits killed four vigilantes in Chikun, Kaduna.
Sectarian violence led to four deaths in Donga, Taraba.

78 of the fighters were members of Boko Haram, while 56 were members of ISWAP. The troops were part of Operation Kantana Jimlan, which launched on 1 May 2020.
According to the UNHRC, the number of people fleeing to Niger has tripled since last year. Niger now hosts over 500,000 refugees from Nigeria, Mali, and Burkina Faso. Additionally, roughly 19,000 Nigerians are internally displaced.

25 militants were killed south of Diffa, Niger. In nearby Nigeria, 50 more were reportedly “neutralized” in the Lake Chad region. Notably, 120,000 Nigerian refugees and 110,000 internally displaces Nigeriens live in Diffa.

Boko Haram militants killed 12 soldiers at a military base in. At least 10 more soldiers were wounded in the attack. The base is outside of Diffa, a city of 200,000 in the remote southeastern part of the country near the Nigerian border.
Amnesty International reports that at least 10,000 civilians have died in military detention. Many of the victims were children, detained without charge, and reportedly living in “inhumane” conditions.
An attack by suspected Boko Haram militants left 81 dead in Faduma Kolomdi, a nomadic village in the North of Gubio. The militants abducted seven people, including the head of the village, as well as 400 cattle.
The two attacks both occurred around the afternoon. In Monguno, 20 soldiers were killed and “hundreds” of civilians were reportedly injured in the crossfire, per VOA. The local hospital was so overwhelmed that some injured victims had to wait outside for help. Militants also burned down the local police station and the United Nations humanitarian hub. Residents reportedly received letters, written in Hausa, warning them not to work for the military or international aid groups. That same afternoon, militants arrived in Nganzai and killed at least 40 civilians.
NARD called for a strike on June 13th over “grossly inadequate” personal protective equipment (PPE) and welfare concerns. Notably the strike exempted Covid-19 treatment centers. On June 22nd NARD called off the strike, saying it was to give the government time to fulfill their demands. NARD represents about 40% of doctors in Nigeria.
In a July 2020 report, REACH designated northeastern Nigeria “hard to reach (h2r)” for humanitarian actors, due to ongoing conflict. Along with climate change, conflict has reduced access to vital resources such as clean water, shelter, and food supplies. REACH found that in 78% of settlements, sick community members were not separated from others. Additionally, outbreaks in the region will likely go unreported, due to the difficulty of reaching the region.
Boko Haram released a video showing the execution five kidnapped aid workers, all from Nigeria. One of the insurgents claimed the execution was “for working with infidels.” However, the execution notably followed the government and humanitarian agencies’ refusal to pay a $500,000 ransom. The aid workers were employed by the State Emergency Management Agency, Action Against Hunger, and the International Rescue Committee.
The governor had been on his way to visit internally displaced persons when militants attacked his convoy in Baga. Security forces managed to fend off the militants, but there were reportedly “some casualties” in the governor’s entourage, per Sahara Reporters. After the attack, Zulum criticized the military for previously denying Boko Haram’s presence in the area.
In the middle of the night, an estimated 20-30 Boko Haram fighters entered and attacked the displacement site in Nguetechewe. In addition to looting and shooting at residents, the militants also used two child suicide bombers, per the Human Rights Watch. The attack killed 17 civilians and wounded 16 more. Security forces in Nguetechewe were reportedly “neither trained nor equipped” for such an attack. After the attack, more security forces were deployed to Nguetechewe.
The prisoners defected on the Nigerian-Cameroonian border and were taken to the Cameroonian Center for Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration.  VOA reports that 45 of the defectors were Nigerian fighters, and three were Cameroonian fighters. Another 45 were Nigerian children and 16 were women “being used as sex slaves.”
ISWAP forces attacked Kukawa town, fighting soldiers guarding the town. Residents had only returned on August 2nd, after spending two years in refugee camps in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state. Despite lingering safety concerns, the government has encouraged displaced persons to return home. During the fighting, three soldiers died, two were wounded, and eight rebels died.
As of August 23rd, there are currently 1,024 confirmed cases, though actual numbers are likely much higher. The threat of Covid-19 is exacerbating welfare in the region, where 7.5 million are already in need of humanitarian aid. The report finds that IDPs are at particularly high risk, in part due to congested living conditions. The report also cites “the prevalence of comorbidities such as chronic malnutrition, and endemic malaria coupled with…measles and expected cholera outbreaks” as additional risks. Furthermore, ongoing conflict with extremist groups (e.g. Boko Haram, ISWAP) has decreased healthcare accessibility.
The Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole attacked ISWAP hideouts in Kirta Wulgo and Sabon Tumbun with “an enhanced force package” of fighter jets and helicopter gunships. Notably, Kirta Wulgo is an administrative headquarters and training camp. As many as 15 ISWAP commanders were at Kirta Wulgo. 

Boko Haram attacked farmers in Alau village, Vanguard reports. Two men were killed and two more kidnapped. The farmers were reportedly from a displacement site.
A suicide bomber killed at least 7 civilians and wounded 14 more in Goldavi, a village in Cameroon’s Far North region. Notably, the village hosts a camp for 18,000 internally displaced people (IDPs). Since early August, attacks on the region have killed 22 people, wounded 29, and displaced at least 7,000, per Cameroonian authorities.

The soldiers were on patrol when ISWAP militants ambushed them in Giwa Village, Kukawa Local Government Area. In addition to killing 10 soldiers (and injuring “many” more, per Vanguard), the militants reportedly stole two gun trucks. 

According to The Who, flash floods have affected 6,742 households in IDP camps in Borno State, particularly regarding access to “water, sanitation, and hygiene facilities.” Additionally, cholera cases will likely increase. The State Ministry of Health and its partners are “in emergency response mode” to mitigate damage. Infrastructure previously used to eradicate wild polio is reportedly aiding efforts. 

The Nigerian Military announced that troops of Operation Lafiya Dole rescued 7 kidnapping victims (2 women and 5 children) in a clearance operation. Additionally, troops killed 9 Boko Haram militants in the operation.

Bandits kidnapped 16 family members and shot 4 more, when the family was on its way to their farm in Uduwa village, in the Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Children, including a young infant, were among those kidnapped.  

The Guardian reports that 10 Chadian soldiers were killed and 7 more injured during an attack on a Boko Haram military base in the Lake Chad Basin region. Details are still unclear, though army spokesperson Azem Mbermandoa, the Chadian military “destroyed a Boko Haram base [and] recovered weapons and ammunition.” 

Soldiers of Operation Lafiya Dole killed 16 Boko Haram militants and arrested 11 more. Among those arrested are reportedly family members of Boko Haram militants, per P.M. News. The soldiers also seized caches of arms and ammunition. 

Governor Zulum called for the National Assembly and the North East Development Commission (NEDC) to address root causes fueling Boko Haram (i.e. poverty, lack of educational access) in the region and help IDPs’ return home. Zulum described worsening living conditions in IDPs centers and host communities, noting that Boko Haram is recruiting children. He further argued that it is “no longer sustainable for [IDP camps] to depend on handouts of international non-governmental organisations and United Nations humanitarian agencies for survival.”

The IOM launched an 8 million USD project to “support holistic community stabilization in conflict-affected communities and youth at risk in the wider Lake Chad region.” The project will aid 300,000 people across Chad’s Lac, Kanem, and Barh el Ghazel regions. 

12.5 million in the Lake Chad Basin region are now in need of urgent assistance, 1.7 million more than in January 2020. Additionally, the report found that more than 1,000 schools in the region have shut down since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Air strikes operated by the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole killed “scores” of Boko Haram militants in Ngala (on the 24th) and Bama (on the 25th), Borno State. Major General John Eneche stated that there was “massive destruction of Boko Haram terrorists’ camps.” 

In Barkalam, near the Nigerian border, Chadian soldiers attacked Boko Haram militants, freeing 12 civilians (nine of whom were children) and killing 15 militants. Later that day, in Bilabrim, Niger,  Chadian soldiers killed five Boko Haram militants. Two Chadian soldiers were injured.

Militants ambushed a government convoy headed to Baga, killing eight policemen and three members of pro-government militia group, Edet Okon. The day before, a convoy carrying Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State safely reached Baga. Zulum had travelled to Baga to discuss the safe return of residents forced to flee Baga two years ago.

13 Boko Haram militants, 6 women, and 17 children surrendered to Nigerian troops in Kodila village, Bama Local Government Area. They are reportedly receiving medical attention at a military hospital. According to Major General John Enenche, the militants had been under “sustained aerial bombardment and aggressive intensive clearance operation” executed by Operation Lafiya Dole.

ISWAP reportedly used a “donkey strapped with explosives” to attack Governor Zulum’s convoy as he returned to Maiduguri. At least 14 police officers and 4 civilians were killed.  

ISWAP forces, reportedly armed with machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades, attacked a military convoy carrying supplies for troops, Vanguard reports. The militants killed 10 Nigerian soldiers and injured 8 more, before looting supplies and setting two vehicles on fire. Per Vanguard, sources suggested the attack was in response to the military’s earlier bombing of ISWAP’s camps in the Marte region, in which three ISWAP commanders were killed. 

In the town of Marte, Borno state, Boko Haram fighters ambushed and killed 10 soldiers and wounded 8. The military vehicle which was operating in the northeastern part of Nigeria was set ablaze while food and essential supplies were seized by the insurgents.

A video circulating on social media shows SARS officials shooting a young man in front of the Wetland Hotel, Ughelli in the Delta state and fleeing with the victim’s Lexus SUV. This brutality triggered protests on social media with the hashtag #EndSARS.

Reports from Reuters indicate that a special directive from the government of Nigeria has ordered the immediate dissolution of SARS.

While addressing some angry protesters in Ikeja, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu pledged to setup a fund that will support Lagos residents who have been victims of police brutality. He said in his statement that the compensation fund will be fully supervised by Civil Society Organizations appointed by members of the public.

As farmers were working on their irrigation fields in the Ngwom village of northeastern Nigeria, Boko Haram militants captured 15 farmers and slit their throats. Unfortunately, 14 of them died while one was admitted to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. Boko Haram and rival groups like ISWAP have increasingly targeted vulnerable farmers, fishermen, and herdsmen, accusing them of spying and sending strategic information to the military and anti-jihadist groups.

As the #ENDSARS movement grows, Governor Zulum of Borno state defended SARS’ record fighting against Boko Haram in northern Nigeria, calling for the dissolved forces to be deployed to Borno state. The Premium Times reported that some civil society members (e.g. the Nigeria Bar Association) say SARS has been useful to northern Nigeria due to the severe security threat Boko Haram poses. However, it should be noted that over the years there have been numerous allegations of human rights violations by SARS in northern Nigeria.

In the middle of the night, Boko Haram militants killed 3 civilians and abducted 4 others during a raid on Oudal village in the Mayo-Moskota subdivision. During a search and rescue mission, a fifth civilian was abducted.

In the wake of Boko Haram’s increasingly frequent attacks, Cameroon closed over 60 schools in the Far North region bordering Borno, Nigeria, per VOA. Since January, Cameroon has reported at least three Boko Haram attacks per week, largely suicide bombings by women and children. According to Ousmanou Garga, a basic education official in the region, there are now 34,054 schoolchildren registered as IDPs in northern Cameroon. The children have had to either attend schools “very far” from their homes or to stop formal education altogether.

Operation Wutar Tabki, the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole killed several Boko Haram insurgents in Tsilala, Borno State. The exact number of casualties is unknown, though the Council on Foreign Relations estimates that 10 militants were killed. Additionally, Major General John Enenche, said that some of the militants’ “structures” in the area were destroyed.

Boko Haram insurgents ambushed Chadian militias in Tchoukou Maria, in the Lac region. 6 soldiers were killed and 12 others injured. 

Boko Haram militants attacked Babangida town in Tarmuwa local government area, where they clashed with police for three hours.  One policeman was killed and another injured, while six Boko Haram insurgents were killed. Additionally, the council secretariat, the divisional police station, and a military base were all partially destroyed in the attack.

On Sunday morning, Boko Haram insurgents attacked Takulashi village, 20 kilometers outside of Chibok. The insurgents killed 12 civilians and abducted 9 women and young girls

The soldiers’ convoy had been transporting food from Maiduguri when they hit an IED on the road, killing 10 soldiers. The Islamic State in West Africa Province later claimed responsibility. 

The CJTF was reportedly ambushed by Boko Haram along Gasarwa and Birmari in Gajiram, Nganzai Local Government Area of Borno state, per The Daily Post. The CJTF reportedly killed “scores” of insurgents, with the Council on Foreign Relations estimating that 20 were killed. Notably, Gajiram became a “ghost town” when the conflict began in 2009, but IDPs recently started returning, even as they face frequent attacks from Boko Haram. 

The UN Migration Agency released their September-October 2020 Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) data for Chad’s Lac Province. The DTM found that the population of IDPs went up to 336,124 in the province, a 13% increase since the agency collected data from June-July. The increase is likely due to increased attacks by armed groups, including Boko Haram/ISWAP. As of July 2020, 2.4 million people have been displaced by the Boko Haram insurgency (UNHCR).

Boko Haram militants attacked Gwoza in Borno State late Sunday night. The number of casualties is still unclear, but the insurgents clashed with security and there were reportedly “several casualties.” Vanguard reports that there were “heavy sounds of gunshots and explosions.” 

The 151 Task Force Battalion helped one woman and three children escape from a Boko Haram enclave outside Miyanti village, Bama Local Government Area. All were uninjured. 

That same day, Boko Haram insurgents attempted to attack Buni Gari village, Yobe State. Five insurgents were killed while “many” escaped with injuries, per Punch. In a press release, Brigadier General Bernard Onyeuko said the military managed to recover a large cache of arms and ammunition from the insurgents.

Six Nigerians were convicted of transferring $782,000 from Dubai to Nigeria for Boko Haram. Two of the men, Surajo Abubakar Muhammad and Saleh Yusuf Adamu, were sentenced to life in prison. The other four—Ibrahim Ali Alhassan, AbdurRahman Ado Musa, and brothers Bashir Ali Yusuf and Muhammad Ibrahim Isa—were given ten-year sentences. Some of their families claimed that the men were mistreated by the UAE and that the Nigerian government failed to help with the case. The elder brother of Ibrahim Ali Alhassan and Bashir Ali Yusuf, notably, said the family did not know where they were for three months after their arrest. 

In response, Governor Zulum of Borno state “urged the Federal Government to consider setting up a multi-stakeholder team… to assiduously work with the UAE to look into the issues raised by families crying foul play, and more importantly, follow-up on the findings by the UAE… to expand the search on other Boko Haram sponsors.” 

The Network of Civil Society Organizations Chairman, Ahmed Shu, called for the government and military to use new strategies against Boko Haram. More specifically, Shu highlighted the need to strengthen security on “all routes linking the capital to local government areas, towns and villages” across the region. He also emphasized the need to foster better civil-military relations and better economic opportunities for youths. 

Militants attacked farmers working on a rice field in Zabarmari village, killing at least 43, per Reuters. A total of 70 people are feared dead in total, with dozens unaccounted for. Of those missing, villagers have no way of knowing whether they have been killed, abducted, or forced to hide in the bush. At the burials, Governor Babagana Zulum called for greater efforts in the fight against Boko Haram, specifically increased recruitment for soldiers, CJTF members and civil defense fighters to protect farmers. The UN described the attack as the most violent direct attack on civilians this year.

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, announced that her office found a “reasonable basis” to believe that Boko Haram had committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in Nigeria such as slavery, rape, and torture. While Bensouda noted that the majority of crimes were committed by non-state actors, she also found “reasonable basis” to believe that Nigerian security forces had committed crimes such as murder, rape, torture, enforced disappearance, forcible transfer of population, and attacks directed at civilians.

After attacking Kankara town, gunmen invaded the Government Science Secondary School, where they reportedly abducted hundreds of schoolboys. There has been some uncertainty as to exactly how many boys were kidnapped, but Amnesty International reports that the number is over 500. As of 13 December, the government is still searching for the remaining students.

Operation Lafiya Dole troops reportedly killed 21 militants, after the militants tried to attack Askira Uba in Borno. The militants had reportedly arrived from Sambisa Forest and surrounded the town in all directions before being driven off by the military. Soldiers also reportedly captured four gun trucks, three boxer motorcycles, a large cache of ammunition and other weapons.

Unidentified assailants attacked Rafi, Niger State. One civilian was killed and  22 others kidnapped. No group has currently claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) announced that soldiers from Operation Fire Ball (a subsidiary of Operation Lafiya Dole) killed 9 Boko Haram militants in two different “encounters” in Borno state. Four insurgents were killed in the first clash, when insurgents attacked Army Super Camp 17 at Cross-Kauwa. The next day, insurgents ambushed Army Super Camp 11 Gamboru. Five insurgents were killed in the attack. According to the DHQ announcement,  soldiers also captured gun trucks and a cache of arms. The announcement did not indicate any soldiers were harmed in the attacks.

344 kidnapped Kankara schoolboys were returned home, Al Jazeera reports. The boys were being held in Rugu Forest in Zamfara state. To ensure their safe return, Nigerian security forces reportedly cordoned off the area the boys were being held in, under orders not to fire their weapons.

There has been continued confusion about precisely how many boys were kidnapped, but Katsina state Governor Aminu Bello Masari stated that he believed “most” of the boys to have been returned.

Notably, Boko Haram coordinated with local bandits to carry out the kidnapping. Boko Haram has been trying to build ties with local bandit groups in order to expand their reach to north-western Nigeria (where the kidnappings took place).

A teenage girl killed herself and three others in a suicide bombing in Konduga, about 38 kilometers outside Maiduguri. Two more people were seriously injured in the attack.  

Islamic State-aligned jihadists ambushed a military convoy outside Mafa. The militants launched a rocket-propelled grenade on the convoy, killing five Nigerian soldiers.

Boko Haram militants killed at least 11 civilians and kidnapped seven others in Pemi, Borno state. Additionally, the militants burnt 10 homes and a church down. They also looted medical supplies and food supplies meant to be distributed to residents for Christmas, according to local militia leader Abwaku Kabu. Notably, Pemi is near Chibok, where 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped in 2014.

Boko Haram militants attacked Garkida, Gombi local government area, on Christmas Eve. Per Vanguard News, the militants arrived in five vehicles and began sporadically shooting at residents, who were forced to flee into nearby mountainous areas. The number of casualties is unclear, but the militants reportedly burned down homes and looted food supplies and pharmacies.

Three loggers were found dead and 40 more abducted in Ngala, Borno state, near the Cameroonian border. According to the AFP, the loggers were rounded up by Boko Haram militants while in Wulgo forest (near Gamboru) collecting firewood. Over recent years, Gomburo loggers have repeatedly faced attacks and abductions from Boko Haram, who are thought to have a camp in the Wulgo forest. Notably, the area has gone without telephone service for years, following a Boko Haram attack that destroyed phone masts.

Boko Haram militants in six trucks attacked three villages—Shafa, Azare, and Tashan Alade—in Borno state. The insurgents burned down homes and public buildings while randomly firing at locals. At least 10 people were killed, according to Sani Mohammed, head of the local militia. Of those killed, four were security personnel.

Insurgents invaded a guinea corn farm in Dar village, Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State. According to Sahara Reporters, the insurgents kidnapped three teenage girls. The insurgents never communicated with the family to ask for a ransom.

The Nigerian Air Force conducted airstrikes on Sambisa Forest in Borno state. The DHQ spokesman, Maj. Gen. John Enenche released a statement claiming the airstrikes killed “many” insurgents and destroyed a hideout. The airstrike was carried out by the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole.

Landmines planted by Book Haram killed seven hunters and badly injured nine others in Kayamla, a village outside Maiduguri.

The Nigerian Air Force destroyed a Boko Haram settlement near Mana Waji, Borno state. Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, the Coordinator of Defence Media Operations, said the mission was carried out after surveillance revealed the presence of the settlement.

The settlement was being used to store weapons as well as plan attacks. Maj.-Gen. Enenche stated that the insurgents fled upon seeing the Nigerian Air Force aircraft. The operation resulted in the killing of “scores” of insurgents, as well as the destruction of logistical stores and other support structures.

Four civilians were killed in two Boko Haram attacks in northern Cameroon, according to officials. The attacks took place in Cameroon’s Far North Region and happened after an operation by the Multinational Joint Task Force (MJTF), a regional security force fighting the Boko-Haram. Three of the dead were members of a vigilance committee in the area, and were killed at around four am near a security post.The fourth person was shot by Boko Haram in the Kolofata area.

On 9 January, Nigerian troops killed 28 Boko Haram militants in Gujba. According to military spokesperson Benard Onyeuko, one soldier was killed and another wounded during the fighting.

The same day, soldiers killed 30 more militants in Buni Yadi. The following day, Nigerian troops attacked a Boko Haram hideout in Kafa, where they killed six more militants.

Six Nigerian soldiers were killed by a suicide bomber driving an “explosive-laden vehicle” per the Guardian. The soldiers were raiding a stronghold of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) in the village of Talala when the suicide bombing occurred. The suicide bomber was affiliated with the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).

A landmine planted by Boko Haram killed five soldiers and injured 15 more. The soldiers were conducting an operation in Kwada Kwamtah Yahi village when they ran into the landmine.

Boko Haram militants attacked a military base in Marte, Borno state. After hearing intelligence about the attack, Nigerian troops withdrew, only to later ambush the militants. Military spokesperson Bernar Onyeuko stated that “7 Boko Haram/ISWAP gun trucks” were destroyed, along with the “scores” of militants who died.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, an estimated 40 militants were killed. It is unclear how many troops were injured (if any) in the clash.

A roadside bomb planted by Boko Haram killed four soldiers in Diffa, Niger. Eight more soldiers were seriously injured in the attack.

A roadside bomb planted by Boko Haram killed four soldiers in Diffa, Niger. Eight more soldiers were seriously injured in the attack.

Nine Nigerian soldiers were killed during a mission to rescue kidnapped civilians. Five Boko Haram militants were killed as well. Notably, that week, Nasarawa’s Governor, Abdullahi Sule, met with President Muhhamadu Buhari to discuss Boko Haram’s resurgence in the state.

Nigerian soldiers from Operation Lafiya Dole killed five Boko Haram militants during a clash in Abbagajiri and Dusula, Damboa Local Government Area. The soldiers also recovered weapons from the militants, along with materials for Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).

Boko Haram militants in gun trucks and motorcycles attacked Dikwa Local Government Area, forcing “hundreds” of residents to flee, per Vanguard News. At least two soldiers died and two police officers were kidnapped in the attack.

The same day, two Boko Haram commanders—Ali For and Maleum Modu—were killed by Nigerian troops in the Borno bushes.

According to Niger’s Defence Ministry, at least four soldiers were killed and eight seriously wounded in a Boko Haram attack.

The attack happened in the Diffa region, when an explosive device was placed where a military convoy was passing.

Bandits attacked 10 villages in Gurmana, Kwaki, and Kurebe in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger state. The insurgents killed 27 residents, injured 20 and kidnapped 40. The bandits entered the villages around 1 am and started firing.

Niger state, in northwest Nigeria, has recently faced attacks by Boko Haram, which often works with local criminal groups. According to a report from SB Morgen, the villages were attacked because local leaders refused to attend a meeting with the insurgents. The meeting was reportedly to negotiate how much would be paid for farmers to harvest their crops without being attacked.

Over 2,000 residents of Borno state had to flee to neighbouring Yobe state due to attacks by gunmen believed to be Boko Haram terrorists. A spokesperson for Yobe Police Command stated that Gubio, Magumeri, Kaga, and Konduga were the worst affected regions.

Nigerian soldiers killed 19 Boko Haram militants in Rann, Kala Balge LGA. The militants had ambushed the soldiers at their military base. After the troops withdrew, the Air Task Force “successfully forced the terrorists to flee the military base,” per Vanguard News.

Insurgents in 11 gun trucks attacked Askira Uba, Borno state. Nigerian troops killed more than 25 of the militants during the attack. The militants likely came from nearby Sambisa Forest.

Boko Haram militants opened fire on a military convoy in Barwanti village in the Lake Chad region. The militants killed an estimated three soldiers in the attack, with one more seriously injured. Two other soldiers went missing during the attack. The convoy had been headed toward Baga, an ISWAP stronghold in the Lake Chad region.

Boko Haram militants reportedly attack Gur Community of Biu Local Government Area, setting homes and shops on fire. Four civilians died in the attack. Additionally, the militants stole at least five vehicles, along with food supplies. While the military did not acknowledge the attack, a security operative (who was not authorized to speak to the press) confirmed the attack to Vanguard News.

Nigerian troops killed two Boko Haram commanders, Abul-Bas and Ibn Habib, on Bank Junction road, between Vuria and Guja settlements in Borno state. Abul-Bas and Ibn Habib were reportedly high-ranking in Shekau’s faction of Boko Haram and had been on intelligence agencies’ watch-list. After killing Abul-Bas and Ibn Habib, the troops were also able to recover supplies/weaponry including several AK-47 rifles, motorcycles, and one GPMG.

Soldiers with the 153rd Task Force Battalion were ambushed by Boko Haram militants in Marte Local Government Area, Borno state. The militants reportedly killed seven soldiers and injured “many others” per the Anadolu Agency.

Boko Haram released a video in which a kidnapped aid worker, Idris Aloma, pleaded for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees to “liaise with the government” to secure his release from Boko Haram. Aloma was kidnapped on January 3rd, while driving on the Maiduguri-Damaturu highway. Terrorist attacks frequently occur in this area. Notably, kidnappings are a significant source of funding for Boko Haram.

35 children, 12 men, and 11 women, including former fighters, were rescued and brought to a disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration center in northern Cameroon. Some of the victims have new scars or amputated body parts. The Multinational Joint Task Force, which included troops from Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigerian, were responsible for freeing the victims. 

Boko Haram militants attacked humanitarian hubs in Damask, located in Borno State. Borno state is in the northeast of Nigeria. 18 people were killed and 21 people injured. Militants pillaged police headquarters, schools, shops, and homes, fired mortars, and set off explosives. The attack coincided with Muslims breaking their fast on the first day of Ramadan. The Saturday before, there was a smaller attack in the same area, which led the UN to cancel humanitarian activities there.

ISWAP fighters and Nigerian troops engaged in a long battle in Dikwa, Borno State, when ISWAP attacked a military base. Soldiers withdrew to Gulumba Gana town close by before an aerial bombardment killed three ISWAP commanders.

Nigerian troops staged an operation against Boko Haram in the Geidem region of Yobe state, killing more than 21 Boko Haram fighters. Boko Haram weapons and ammunition were also destroyed.

Cameroon’s military staged an operation to push 80 Boko Haram fighters from Fotokol, killing several, destroying six war jeeps, and seizing a large arsenal. They also freed several civilians who had been taken by the fighters.

ISWAP jihadists attacked a military convoy and base in the town of Mainok, Borno State, in northeast Nigeria. The convoy was carrying weapons to Maidugri and the jihadists who attacked outnumbered the soldiers. They took weapons from the convoy and also set fire to the military base.

Boko Haram militants raide Kaure, a remote community in Niger State, and kidnapped women. Boko Haram’s presence in Kaure is a large security threat to Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, which is less than a two hour drive away. 

Boko Haram militants who went through Borno state in Nigeria to carry out an attack in Chad were met by Chadian troops who killed more than 22 of them. One week after Chad President Idriss Deby’s death, there is fear of weakened security in the country. Boko Haram have already attacked five towns in Yobe and Borno state, close to Chad, killing over 50 soldiers and civilians.


More than a dozen soldiers and civilians were killed in a Boko Haram-led attack in Ajiri, a remote town in northeast Borno state. Boko Haram militants opened fire on an army base there and then set houses on fire. The attack followed another one by ISWAP militants on an army base in Rann, also in Borno state, the day before.

2,000 children have been cleared of links to non-state armed groups in the northeast of Nigeria since 2016. The children were arrested having been suspected of having links to Boko Haram. Another 2,188 children conscripted by the Civilians Joint Task Force (CJTF) were also freed. The intervention for children’s rights was supported by the European Union.

Boko Haram insurgents on motorcycles and in trucks filled with machine guns infiltrated into Jiddari Polo, an area on the outskirts of Maiduguri, in the late afternoon as Muslims were preparing to break their Ramadan fast. Maiduguri is the capital of Borno state. They started firing but were met with troops from a base close by, forcing civilians to flee. No military casualties were reported.

Five villagers were killed and two injured in an attack on Fantio, located in the Tillaberi region in western Niger. Tillaberi is close to Niger’s border with Mali, where jihadist group attacks are frequent. The G5 Sahel force, which includes soldiers from Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger, were sent to the village. 

Boko Haram has proposed a ransom of N28 million for the 52 residents of the Kwapre community in Adamawa state who were abducted last month in a raid. Many of the people abducted are women and children.

The Nigerian government is reopening the existing special terrorism courts throughout the country to put 400 suspected Boko Haram financiers on trial. The government has been profiling high-profile Nigerians suspected of being financiers, some of whom are located in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The Group of Seven (G7) — consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the US — convened in London and agreed to commit £276m to support the humanitarian response in North East Nigeria.

40 Boko Haram members were reported dead and others injured after the Nigerian army bombed a Boko Haram meeting in Dawuri village, Borno State.The Boko Haram fighters were planning an attack in Maiduguri.

Abubakar Shekau was seriously wounded from trying to commit suicide after fighting occured between ISWAP militants and Boko Haram in Borno state. Boko Haram’s Sambisa forest stronghold was surrounded by ISWAP, who demanded Shekau surrender. One intelligence source said that to avoid capture he shot himself in the chest. Another reported that he detonated explosives in a house where he was hiding with his men. Shekau has led Boko Haram’s incursion into northeastern Nigeria.

Three Nigerian women, two who were kidnapped in the attack on Chibok School and the other whose father was shot by Boko Haram, graduated from US universities this May. Two earned degrees from Southeastern University in Florida in social work and legal studies, and the other earned a masters from Keck Graduate Institute in California. The Virginian human rights group the Jubilee Campaign helped these women come to the United States.

Boko Haram rode in about 15 vehicles to attack Diffa, in southeastern Niger. They killed four soldiers and four civilians. 

Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Nigeria’s Boko Haram has been confirmed dead after detonating an explosive when confronted by ISWAP fighters. ISWAP offered Shekau the opportunity to repent and join forces with them, but he killed himself so that he would not have to concede. Beginning in 2009, Shekau developed Boko Haram into a large insurgency, causing casualties and displacement across primarily northeast Nigeria. His death could mean the end of the rivalry between Boko Haram and ISWAP fighters, leading ISWAP to absorb Boko Haram and secure its presence in northeast Nigeria.

The Chibok School has been remodeled and newly commissioned as “Government Secondary School,” with a student population that will be boys and girls. Chibok was the site of the April 14, 2014 attack where 276 school girls were abducted and school premises destroyed. Former President Goodluck Jonathan and finance minister Dr. Ngozi Okonjo Iwella started the process of rebuilding the school in 2015. President Muhammadu Buhari joined the project and Governor of Borno State Babagana Umara Zulum took it over and saw it to completion.

Appears that ISWAP’s orders to kill former Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is part of a play to strengthen ISIS influence in Boko Haram. It is believed that ISIS is gaining popularity across the Sahel region of northern Africa. The death of Shekau comes at a time of increasing insecurity across the Sahel.

Aid workers, amongst others, were freed after negotiations. Most of the released were abducted during former raids on Borno State. Among those released is a staff member of the UNHCR, Idris Alooma,  who was abducted in January; and a senior Christian cleric, Reverend Zango. These negotiations are positive signs towards getting back some of Boko Haram’s abductees.

On June 15th, 2021, Boko Haram confirmed Abubakar Shekau’s death, as he blew himself up after learning ISWAP fighters wanted to capture him alive. ISWAP travelled through the Sahara and got into Shekau’s enclave before engaging in a fun fight with his followers. ISWAP was said to disagree with Shekau’s excessive force, particularly on Muslims.

The attack is the third mass kidnapping in three weeks in northwest Nigeria, in the state of Kebbi. Most of the students taken were girls, and it took place at a federal government college in the remote town of Birnin Yauri. Authorities have attributed the uptake in attacks due to insurgents seeking ransom payments. One police officer was killed in the altercation. The bandits have abducted more than 800 Nigerian students since September, many of whom are still missing.

Christopher Musa assumed duty as the Theatre Commander for the Joint Task Force Operation in Maiduguri, Borno State’s capital, on Friday and will lead Nigeria’s war against Boko Haram. He called for support and understanding of all stakeholders in the fight against the insurgency. He also solicited support from the media in counter-insurgency operations.

Nigeria is preparing to begin the trial of 800 suspected Boko Haram terrorists. Out of 1,000 case files reviewed, 280 had been filed at the Nigerian Federal High Court while 170 suspects were released due to lack of evidence. The Deputy Director, Persecution and Head of Complex Casework Group, Federal Ministry of Justice, Chioma Onuegbu  stated that the charges had been served on the Legal Aid Council of Nigeria, who would be defending the suspects in court.

The Nigerian army killed six Boko Haram terrorists who were attempting a suicide attack. The army thwarted the attack that was staged to take place in the northeastern town of Kumshe, in Borno State. The terrorists were reportedly mounted on four gun trucks and multiple motorcycles, of which the army was able to confiscate weapons found on these vehicles.

Herdsmen that are committing banditry in northeastern Nigeria are justifying their attacks through religious texts, slowing radicalizing themselves. As the bandits are fighting a tribal war, it is becoming clear that the Nigerian government is taking one side and forgetting the atrocities that the bandits have been put through themselves, such as what led them to become violent to begin with. This makes them perfect recruitment targets for Boko Haram and ISWAP, which have been prevalent especially in Northern Nigeria.

Weeks after the death of former Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, it seems as though Boko Haram and ISWAP have resolved any former issues. This was concluded based on a video obtained by PRNigeria, which showed the terrorists reuniting themselves, and pledging their allegiances to Aba Ibrahim Al-Hasimiyil AlKhuraishi, or ‘Khalifan Muslimai,’ which translates to ‘The Leader of all Muslims.’ The reunification of these two groups may prove to be worrisome as Boko Haram will be able to obtain much needed support after the death of Shekau.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab hinted that the UK plans to commit millions to support Nigeria and other countries’ battles against the rising Islamic terrorism across the African continent. He cited the need for a budget for the growing threat of terrorism in West Africa. This is great news as Boko Haram and ISWAP have recently reunited and the region undoubtedly needs more financial support in the fight against Islamic terrorism.

It was reported that around 40 ISWAP-Boko Haram terrorists have been killed in a joint military operation by the Air taskforce and ground troops of the Nigerian military at Bula Yobe. The airstrikes destroyed terrorist camps at Abadam axis and Sambisa Forest. The raids were launched after intelligence was gathered on the whereabouts of the camps and a series of aerial surveillance missions were completed.

Around 30 ISWAP/Boko Haram terrorists were killed along the Damaturu-Maidguri highway late Friday by Nigerian troops of Operation Hadin Kai. In this operation, three gun trucks were destroyed along with most of its occupants. This is great news as ISWAP and Boko Haram have recently reunited. The Nigerian military has been keeping track and trying to eliminate all possible terror threats. 

Borno State governor, Babagana Zulum, visited Malam-Fatori, a former stronghold of Boko Haram in order to start to plan the reconstruction of destroyed communities of the terrorist group. Most of the communities were deserted in 2014, but the governor seems hopeful that former residents can now return as the insurgents have since left the area.

Over 140 Nigerian schoolchildren were kidnapped on July 5th in the country’s northwest Kaduna state, which has been suffering from increased kidnappings for ransom since Boko Haram underwent its first school kidnapping in 2014. The kidnappings were the fourth armed attack on a school in Kaduna in the past five months. The bandits overtook the school’s security guards and abducted the students. Since December, over 1,000 students have been abducted, nine killed, and over 200 are still missing. These ransom abductions are helping fuel Boko Haram’s operations.

At least 24 people have been killed by Boko Haram terrorists in the farming community of Dabna. It has been reported that the terrorists attacked multiple villages in the northern state of Adamawa, spreading terror amongst the local residents.

After the most recent abduction in Maiduguri where 140 students were abducted, parents are calling for international help and putting pressure on the government to stop the kidnappings and end abduction for ransom in Nigeria. Citizens took to the streets to protest for peace, and parents were seen in distress. Over 1,000 students have been kidnapped since December, with over half of these being done in the past six weeks. The government is blamed for giving into the kidnappers’ demands and not being able to trace the ransom money once it is paid out, leaving the kidnappers at large.

Troops of Sector 2 Joint Task Force Operation Hardin Kai were able to arrest a Boko Haram/ISWAP informant who was committing espionage activities on troops around Katarko village of Yobe State. During this time the troops were also able to defend against an attack on the village. The victim was identified as Abor Kawu, and confessed to have given information on Nigerian troops’ movements and location to the terrorist groups.

The governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum, briefed President Muhammadu Buhari on the planned repatriation of over 200,000 Nigerians that have been displaced due to Boko Haram and who are now residing in Chad, Cameroon, and Niger. The governor seemed excited to be able to begin the repatriation of residents on November 27, 2021 due to the increased safety situation in Borno State. This is positive news for the future of Nigeria as the country feels as though it soon will be safe to reintroduce their citizens back into their homes.

This past Wednesday the Nigerian government released 1,009 ex-Boko Haram insurgents, who were residing at Giwa Barracks in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. It is unclear why this was carried out as of now, but the transfer was done in secret, and the terrorists were reportedly handed over to the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Zuwaira Gambo. It was later reported that the released were only suspects of being implicated in terrorist activities, and they were decided innocent. 

Mary Katambi, one of the 276 ‘Chibok’ girls, who was abducted by Boko Haram at Chibok State Secondary School in April 2014 has recently graduated from university. In 2014 she escaped from her attackers and despite the security threat, decided to continue on with her education. She completed her accounting degree at the American University in Yola, Adamawa State. She is the first of the Chibok girls to graduate. It is important to note that some of her classmates were also kidnapped, but had to drop out due to PTSD from their experiences. Mary’s ability to power through her education makes her a symbol of hope for girls all over Nigeria, particularly in regions where Boko Haram still causes a terror threat.

As Nigeria reels under its growing kidnapping crisis, 100 people in northwest Nigeria have been freed 42 days after gunmen went on a raid in their village. Among the released were dozens of women with children. Police and security forces liberated the 100 victims from a Zamfara forest hideout late Tuesday, where they had been held since June 8th. Luckily, police forces were able to rescue these abductees without having to pay a ransom. However, this is not often the case as over the past few months kidnapping for ransom has become the most lucrative industry in northern Nigeria, according to Bulama Bukarti, a security analyst and human rights lawyer from the northeast.

Nigeria has received six of its planned twelve A-29 Super Tucanos planes in its campaign against Boko Haram. The Brazilian-developed planes were manufactured in August 2017 under the Trump administration. This comes at a crucial time where air support is increasingly needed as ground troops are finding ground raids to be increasingly dangerous.

Boko Haram was able to take over an army base in Cameroon’s Far North region this past Saturday, hitting the base in Sagme locality of the region around 4am. In the attack at least 7 soldiers were killed, with the commander of the military base being one of the fatalities. This attack has been the deadliest on the Cameroon army in more than 10 months.


The kidnapping earlier this month at Bethel Baptist High School in the state of Kaduna was the 10th mass school kidnapping since December in northwest Nigeria. Yesterday, 28 of the children were freed due to negotiations, but 81 children are still missing. The state has closed down the school along with others in the region, without setting a reopening date. Schools have become prime targets for mass kidnappings in northern Nigeria this year. Being first adopted by Boko Haram and then ISWAP, now regular criminal gangs are picking up the practice as they see that they can extort authorities for money.

Armed militants have abducted a negotiator who had been sent to pay ransom money to secure the release of 136 students kidnapped two months ago from an Islamic school in the north. The director of the school, Abubakar Alhassan, explained how the school and parents have been negotiating with the kidnappers who demanded 30 million naira (around $91,425 CAD) in order to release the students. As the government declared it would not pay any ransom for the children, the school and parents were left to come up with the money, with many of them selling their own property and belongings to try and buy back their children. The negotiator was abducted as when he presented the bandits with the ransom money he was short. 

Internally displaced farmers are expressing how the conflict has pushed them into poverty. As farming is an extremely common way for families to make a living in Borno State, not being able to do so has made living extremely difficult. Road closures, a ban on the cultivation of tall crops, curfews, and control on sales of fuel have all made farming extremely difficult to continue in this conflict. 

The troops of Operation Hadin Kai have taken custody of 91 terrorists and their families who surrendered in the northeast, including women and children. The troops of 202 Battalion took custody of 8 insurgents and their families (10 adult females and 22 children), who surrendered at Ruwaza village in Bama Local Government Area of Borno. The troops of Forward Operational Base (FOB) along with BoCobs-Bama road also arrested 20 terrorists and their families, who surrendered at Nbewa village in Bama.

An abducted Chibok girl and her now-husband have surrendered to the Nigerian military. The girl was kidnapped over seven years ago. Although the girl’s identity is not publicly revealed, it is reported that she and her husband have renounced the Islamic extremist ideology.

Save the Children has announced that it will stay committed to delivering food and nutrition to the estimated 2.3 million children and youth, including 700,000 children under five that are going hungry in Nigeria’s northeast. A recent UN report cited that 4.4 million people in the area are on the brink of acute hunger as Boko Haram attacks are increasing, putting a further strain on the security of the area.

Following a military offensive in Nigeria’s northeast and the death of former leader Abubakar Shekau, there has been an uptick in Boko Haram insurgents surrendering the past couple of weeks. Most recently, the army is reporting that 335 Boko Haram extremists, including two top commanders, have laid down their arms and renounced their membership to the group.

Borno’s state governor announced that a second one of the ‘Chibok girls’ was freed this week. Hassana Adamu, along with her two children were handed to Governor Babagana Zulum on Saturday. It is reported that she presented herself to the Nigerian army.

In the past couple of weeks over 1,000 Boko Haram fighters have surrendered to the Nigerian army. These fighters are defecting along with their families, adding hundreds of women and children to the mix. It is believed that the recent uptick in defections is due to a recent charge in offensive operations carried out by the government.

Abatcha Ngala, a former vulcanizer and fighter for Boko Haram, explains why he surrendered to the Nigerian army recently. He told Nigeria’s daily post how most of the soldiers in Boko Haram did not own their own guns and were only given to them by the organization when it was time to fight. He was tired of the idea of the group and this is why he decided to come out of the forest with his family to surrender and start a new life.

With over 1,000 Boko Haram fighters surrendering in the past few weeks, the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum stresses that Nigerian President Buhari should not pardon the fighters, citing what is currently happening now in Afghanistan with the Taliban could repeat itself. This is an interesting point of view that could be studied further to determine the President’s actions.

The United States ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard, told reporters in Abuja that the US would assist Nigeria in helping identify sponsors of Boko Haram.

In the past few weeks, over 6,000 Boko Haram fighters have surrendered. The army attributes this to the increased counter-insurgency efforts currently in place in the northern states of the country. Most of these fighters have surrendered with their families, and there is growing controversy on what to do with all of the new surrenders.

The bandits responsible for the kidnappings of hundreds of students this year have been the main reason that schools remain closed, cutting off thousands of students from education. Although Boko Haram started with the kidnappings, it seems as though now bandits have taken over this lucrative industry, disrupting thousands of lives in the process.

Yawi Modu, a top commander of Boko Haram, was recently arrested after an anonymous tip claimed he was on Damboa-Wajiroko road, where he was picked up. Modu has been on the country’s wanted list for some time and his arrest signals further hope for the country to rid itself of Boko Haram.

Boko Haram financiers have been outed by the UAE Cabinet with Resolution Number 83 of 2021, which designates 38 people and 15 entities on its approved list of persons and organizations supporting Boko Haram and other terrorist causes. 6 Nigerians were on the list, all of whom have been previously tried and sentenced in UAE

Local reports have cited 10 civilian deaths in a targeted airstrike in a village in Yobe state. The airstrike was aimed at targeting Boko Haram fighters but civilians seem to be the victims in this instance. The governor has instructed hospitals to provide free healthcare to the victims as an investigation by the government is underway.

After at least nine civilians were killed in last Wednesday’s airstrike conducted by the Nigerian Air Force in Yobe State, victims’ families are demanding compensation by the government. Among the victims were children, women and the elderly. The Air Force were tracking Boko Haram/ISWAP’s movements in the area and the victims were mistaken for fighters.

Dozens of soldiers from the Nigerian army were ambushed on their way to Maiduguri this past Friday, in between the Marte-Dikwa council areas. Around 30 soldiers were killed in the attack.

The Council headquarters of Damboa in Borno state were invaded by Boko Haram terrorists on the evening of October 2nd. The insurgents set houses on fire and killed many, reports claim.

The North East Development Commission has cited that 500,000 structures, including houses and buildings – have been destroyed in Boko Haram this past decade as the insurgency worsened. As Boko Haram is not as prevalent in the North-East region as before, the government is trying to plan on how it will reinstitute the thousands of homes that were lost that belong to now displaced families.

The Governor of Borno announced that due to increasing security in the state, IDP camps will be shut by the end of the year. Although Boko Haram is still active, the government believes that conditions are stable enough for IDPs to return to their lives.

Boko Haram invaded a Nigerian military base in Katarko village in Yobe State this past Saturday. It has been reported that the group invaded with 10 guntrucks, and that casualties have been reported.

President Muhammadu Bahari announced that 12 million children are scared to go to school, as terrorism and kidnappings have been especially prevalent in the past year. Since the 2014 Chibok kidnapping, attacks on schools and abductions of students have risen dramatically.

Boko Haram members ambushed and abducted passengers aboard 8 commercial and private vehicles along Maiduguri-Tamsu Kawu-Ngamdu-Damaturu road. Some of those abducted were later released after proving their Islamic beliefs, but the Christian’s in the group are still being held. Interestingly, these terrorists claimed that they were involved in the killing of former leader Abubakar Shekau.

Militants from Libya and Syria have arrived in Nigeria under the mandate of ISIS, in the Sabon Tumbu state. Reports claim that they will be attacking Baga, Malam Fatori and Marte communities shortly. It is unclear whether the ISIS militants are acting alongside Boko Haram militants.

Boko Haram insurgents attacked soldiers in Tamsukawu, Kaga Local Council of Borno State. The insurgents arrived in gun trucks, killing many soldiers but sparing civilians.

Operation Hadin Kai has been successful in eliminating 31 terrorists and arresting 71. Furthermore, 1,186 Boko Haram insurgents and their families surrendered in Borno State.

Operation Hadin Kai continues to effectively deal with terrorists, inflicting heavy casualties on Boko Haram and ISWAP insurgents. Weapons and ammunition were also recovered, such as AK-47 rifles, grenades, and teargas.

The Nigerian State Government has announced that Boko Haram insurgents have taken full control of five communities in Rafi and Shiroto. Residents have been forced by insurgents to flee the state to safer areas.

Boko Haram surrenderers who are being held in a camp in Borno state have started riots. The riots have resulted in residents surrounding the camp with weapons and threatening anyone who leaves the facility.

Nigeria’s Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK), Operation Emergence-4, and the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) are making changes to strategies used against Boko Haram and ISWAP. The required changes call for increased collaboration between Nigeria and Cameroon.

Nigerian troops inflicted casualties on ISWAP, Boko Haram, and bandits. Over the past two weeks, 140 ISWAP and Boko Haram terrorists, as well as 128 bandits, were eliminated. In addition, 48 kidnapped victims were rescued, and 113 criminal elements were arrested; amongst them was Haladu Saleh, on the most wanted list.

A letter signed by the State Director of Security, M.B. Abdullahi, addressed to Customs Area Controller, Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun Area Command, Abeokuta, has urged tightening security measures as a plot by insurgents to attack border military bases was revealed.

The Joint Task Force operating in the North-East of Nigeria has eliminated a large number of terrorists at the Forward Operating Base in Borno State. A collection of weapons and ammunition was recovered, including rifles and an anti-aircraft gun.

Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Umara Zulum, has announced that the electricity supply will be restored within the next 30 days. Boko Haram insurgents were directly responsible for the power outage after they destroyed electricity transmission towers in Maiduguri.

Sector 2 Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK) has once again proven its effectiveness as it inflicted heavy casualties on ISWAP and Boko Haram insurgents in Buni Yadi, Yobe State, after which the insurgents withdrew from the battle.

Since 2009, 100 district heads who resisted Boko Haram’s attempt to establish a caliphate have been killed. The Victims Support Fund (VSF) responded by preparing and presenting starter-packs to out-of-school youths affected by the killings.

The Nigerian government offered insurgents benefits in return for leaving Boko Haram. However, these benefits, such as education, employment, and shelter, were delivered, causing repentant insurgents to return to Boko Haram.

Following the significant increase in Boko Haram defectors, the rehabilitation and reintegration process has been economically and ethically challenging. Defectors feel that they are not sufficiently prepared to earn a living after being reintegrated, thereby discouraging others from surrendering. The lack of funding and support from the authorities has resulted in inefficient monitoring of the centres.

Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists attacked the police station in Yobe State on the 3rd of December, abducting 20 police officers. Operation Hadin Kai has since successfully rescued the 20 abducted police officers.

More on this Crisis

Atiku Abubakar

A New Nigeria Or Tinubu’s Nigeria?

The 2023 Nigerian elections were tumultuous and highly contested, however, Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) party came out victorious as Nigeria’s

Read More »

Opportunities in the Crisis Index

If you have relevant knowledge of a particular region and are interested in being a Regional Crisis Adviser or Senior Correspondent (Crisis Index), please email our Crisis Index Coordinator at

Interested incontributing to the Crisis Index?

We have a team of knowledgeable advisors and senior correspondents responsible for updating and maintaining our Crisis Index pages. For more information on the roles and responsibilities, click the button below.
Click Here