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U.S. supports Nigeria's battle against Muslim terrorists, says Kerry

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The United States government will assist the Nigerian security forces in the investigations of heinous terrorist bombings and ambushes. The Nigerians must capture these Islamists and neutralize their organization, Secretary of State John Kerry said in a press statement released on Sunday.

"The people of... Nigeria deserve to live free from violence and from terror," Kerry said in the statement.

"Unspeakable violence and acts of terror like the ones committed by Boko Haram last week in northern Nigeria are horrific, wrong, and have no place in our world," Kerry said in his statement issued by the U.S. State Department.

Kerry gave the example of a Feb. 15, 2014, terrorist attack in Borno, Nigeria, that left more than 115 Nigerians dead and many more wounded.

Borno is considered one of the al-Qaeda affiliated Boko Haram's strongholds from where they launch their deadly attacks, especially on police officers, military personnel and Christians, the Examiner reported.

Since 2010, Boko Haram Islamists have perpetrated drive-by shootings and suicide bombings that have killed 1,548 people. It wants the current Nigerian government to establish Sharia law throughout the nation, the Examiner reported.

In his press statement, Secretary Kerry reiterated U.S. plans to offer assistance to Nigerian police, intelligence and military forces. Kerry advised the Nigerian government to "develop a comprehensive approach to combat the threat posed by Boko Haram.

"The U.S. remains a committed partner of the government of Nigeria as it works to root out Boko Haram and associated groups," Kerry added.

According to an Examiner report, "Since 2010, Boko Haram Islamists have perpetrated drive-by shootings and suicide bombings that have killed 1,548 people. It wants the current Nigerian government to establish Sharia law throughout the nation."

Boko Haram (translated: "Western or non-Islamic education is a sin") is a controversial Islamist group that seeks the imposition of Shariah law in the northern states of Nigeria. The group's official name is Jama'atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda'awati wal-Jihad, which in Arabic means "People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet's Teachings and Jihad," according to the Law Enforcement Examiner.

According to the Law Enforcement Examiner on February 18, "Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan and his military and law enforcement leaders have told the Nigerian people and the leaders of the African Union that, besides being better armed, Boko Haram members are more motivated to achieve their goal of an Islamic state than the poorly paid military and police forces are motivated to preserve the democracy."



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