The Nigerian jihadist group Boko Haram has confirmed the death of its leader Abubakar Shekau after clashes in the Sambisa forest with members of the Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA), as reported by the British television broadcaster BBC.
The statement was read in a three-minute video by a man identified as Bakura Modu aka “Sahalaba” who was targeted as a possible new leader of the group. Modu is flanked by dozens of armed men with Boko Haram flags.
Confirmation comes about two weeks after ISWA announced the death of Shekau, who has led Boko Haram since 2009, and found that the attack on his positions in the Sambisa Forest was on the direct orders of the Islamic State leader Muhammad Said Abdelrahman the Maula took place.
The leader of the Islamic State described Shekau as “the leader of disobedience and corruption” and assured that his fighters were “pleased” with his death, which occurred after he activated a charge of explosives that he had on him after he escaped wore. an attack on their hiding place.
According to the ISWA version, Shekau escaped the attack alive, albeit badly injured, and “dying” wandered through the forest for five days, where he was eventually cornered. Despite an offer of amnesty by ISWA fighters, “Shekau preferred to be humiliated in the afterlife rather than being humiliated while he was alive” and activated the explosive charge he was carrying.
Shekau has been the leader of Boko Haram since 2009, following the death of the group’s founder, Mohammed Yusuf, and his death has been announced several times in the past. While pledging allegiance to then-Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi in 2015, he was removed from office, which led to the division of the group and the rise of ISWA.
While both groups have had sporadic clashes in recent years, the fighting has increased in recent weeks, which the HumAngle portal, run by Ahmad Salkida, a Boko Haram expert, has put some pressure on ISWA for some of the bombing blames the Nigerian army against their positions.