Monday, December 3, 2012

Boko Haram as a Terrorist Organization

Our church distributes a prayer calendar for the persecuted church worldwide every month.  Often the nation of Nigeria is on it with a special mention of the Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram and its attacks on Christians.  Now Alliance Defending Freedom is petitioning the U. S. Government to officially designate Boko Haram as a terrorist organization.  In a news release ADF states:
Alliance Defending Freedom and Jubilee Campaign, together with several other concerned organizations, are formally requesting that the U.S. State Department designate the Nigerian jihadist group Boko Haram as a “foreign terrorist organization.” Boko Haram is responsible for killing an estimated 3,000 Nigerians and citizens of 11 other countries—primarily Christians—in the last three years and has acknowledged it has ties to Somalian terrorist groups and Al Qaeda. The prosecutor at the International Criminal Court in The Hague recently found probable cause that the group committed crimes against humanity.
The reason that such a declaration is important is stated in the news release:
The Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 empowers the State Department to designate such groups as “foreign terrorist organizations.” Such a designation would have numerous effects, including the ability to freeze and seize bank accounts, arrest and deport Boko Haram members and associates, and impose sanctions on countries that fund the terrorist group.
 For those interested they can read the official 66 page petition HERE.


The White House website petition needs 25,000 signatures to trigger a needed official response.  Please consider being a part of this petition for our brothers and sisters in Christ who reside in Nigeria.

UPDATE (12/4): I just received this from Christian Aid and it gives more of the context of what Boko Haram does:
NIGERIA: Terror Increases Daily in Africa's Most Influential Nation

By Rae Burnett

Some of last week's Boko Haram terrorist headlines: twenty female university students slaughtered in the middle of the night; Christian family of three burned to death in their home; ten Christians murdered and homes destroyed by fire; three churches torched; three police stations bombed, one to release the terrorists who had been captured and imprisoned....on and on. This well-funded Muslim terrorist group whose name means they are against Western education is striking fear throughout the nation with the purpose of forcing enactment and strict enforcement of Islamic sharia law.

Attacks are increasing and now occur almost daily with nothing to deter them. Nigeria is sub-Saharan Africa's most populous and influential country. An Islamic Nigeria would have a profound impact on the entire continent.