Nigerian Terror Cell Gives Insight Into Inner-Workings of Iranian Intelligence
Nigeria is "the fifth largest provider of oil to the U.S.," "the most populous country in Africa," and it is allegedly home to an Iranian-backed terror cell which has been planning to assassinate Nigerian leaders and attack Western targets in the region.
Shiite cleric Mallam Abdullahi Mustaphah Berende has been accused of heading the terror cell. And the training allegedly provided to him by Iran goes a long way in showing how Iranian intelligence agencies operate.
Berende began visiting Iran to study at Imam Khomeini University in 2006. Over time, he was allegedly approached and in 2011 was recruited for terror-related activities.
To that end, he was "trained in the use of the AK-47 rifle, pistols, and the production of improvised explosive devices."
In 2012, he was asked to set up a terror cell in Lagos, Nigeria, and he reportedly began doing surveillance on areas frequented by Israelis and Americans. He also allegedly spied on the activities of USAID and the Peace Corps, among other groups, and fed that information back to Iran.
The Nigeria State Secret Service arrested Berende on Dec. 17, 2012, and he reportedly confessed to his work on behalf of Iran. His confession bolsters the theory that "Shiite communities around the world represent the infrastructure upon which Iran builds its subversive policies worldwide."