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Video: Boko Haram addresses America, declares an 'Islamic caliphate'

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau declared an Islamic caliphate in the northeastern town of Gwoza in Borno State in northern Nigeria, as reported Tuesday at the Sydney Morning Herald.

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau declares an 'Islamic caliphate' in northern Nigeria
BBC [screenshot from video]

Shekau also taunted France, Israel and the United States in a video released over the weekend, where he proclaimed, "[Y]ou are all pagans and we will kill you, even if you do not attack us we will kill you...Allah commands us to kill without pity."

Last month, the brazen leader praised the Islamic State for it's advances in Iraq and Syria. Reminiscent of videos released by ISIS, the Boko Haram video highlights men being executed as they lie face-down in the dirt.

Shekau was thrust onto the world stage after kidnapping hundreds of girls from a Government Secondary School, Chibok, in Borno State. The kidnappings sparked an international campaign to "Bring Back Our Girls."

In May, the AP reported that President Obama "deployed 80 military personnel to Chad to help locate the nearly 300 girls kidnapped in Nigeria," but tragically the girls are still missing and Boko Haram's reign of terror has seemingly intensified. Abubakar Shekau mocked the "bring back our girls" effort, releasing a video where he says, "bring back our army."

Borno State has long been under siege by Boko Haram. Last year, the Rev. Samuel Dante Dali was quoted as saying,

"[T]hey attacked Christians from house to house and burned almost every church in the Gwoza and Gavva areas."

Last month, it was reported at Reuters that it was likely that Boko Haram is responsible for a wave of female suicide bombings in Kanu, one conducted by a ten year old girl.

The Daily Post in Nigeria published the full text of the speech. Abubakar Shekau was quoted as saying in part,

“To the Americans: who is America in the sight of Allah? Who is America in the sight of Allah? Who is Israel in the sight of Allah? Who is France in the sight of Allah? It is only when we don't have firm belief. We don't fear you at all. We are the ones who carried out all these attacks. Not just Gwoza but all the attacks you see in Borno (state) or any part of the country. We are the ones carrying them out.

“This is the life for us; it is our world and we are living it out. How can one fear these American people if one is indeed a believer? One needs not to. This is the speech I have to make which is a warning for worse things to come. Better submit to Allah before it becomes too late.”

In 2012, U.S. former Assistant Secretary of State for Africa Ambassador Johnnie Carson stressed that despite the vast majority of attacks aimed at Christians and churches, Boko Haram is not motivated by ideology but rather "intended to inflame religious tensions and upset the nation’s social cohesion." At a forum on U.S. policy toward Nigeria, he said "religion is not driving extremist violence either in Jos or northern Nigeria.”

"Allah commands us to rule Gwoza by Islamic law," Abubakar Shekau said in the most recent video. "In fact, he commands us to rule the rest of the world, not only Nigeria, and now we have started."

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