The leader of the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL)-linked terrorist group Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau, has reportedly suffered yet another “fatal injury” at the hands of the Nigerian military more than a year after his alleged death.
Nigeria has repeatedly claimed to have spent Boko Haram, but the jihadist group continues to wreak havoc.
“There was no immediate comment from the Nigerian military when contacted by AFP,” reports Agence France-Presse, referring to Shekau’s alleged injury. “The authorities have previously claimed to have killed Shekau on at least three occasions.”
The recent reports of Shekau’s injury come soon after the Nigerian military dismissed as false concerns of a Boko Haram resurgence in northeastern Nigeria, the group’s stronghold and birthplace.
Nigeria’s NAIJ reports, “Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, has been injured after Nigerian air force jets bombed insurgents who had gathered for prayers in Balla village [located at] the edge of the Sambisa Forest, sources have disclosed.”
The Nigerian government has specifically identified Northeastern Nigeria’s Sambisa forest, which covers parts of the states of Borno, Yobe, Gombe, Bauchi, and Kano, as the group’s last remaining stronghold.
“Shekau was wounded in the bombings and is believed to be receiving treatment near the Nigerian border with Cameroon around Kolofata,” an anonymous source with contacts within Boko Haram told AFP.
“His deputy, Abba Mustapha, alias Malam Abba, was killed in the attack along with another key lieutenant, Abubakar Gashua, alias Abu Aisha,” he also said.
“Shekau was injured and a number of commanders were killed,” added Babakura Kolo, a member of the civilian militia in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state and Boko Haram’s birthplace.
A Nigerian army commander reportedly confirmed the terrorist leader’s death in early September 2016 after he was reported “fatally wounded” that year.
Then, Shekau again surfaced in a video later that September defiantly saying, “Here I am.”
In December 2016, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari alleged that his country’s army had pushed Boko Haram out of its “last enclave” in the vast Sambisa forest.
The terrorist group’s chief was featured in a video in March 2017, saying, “You are telling lies.”
Boko Haram is known to launch attacks in Nigeria as well as neighboring Cameroon, Niger, and Chad.
Despite the government’s repeated claims that it has cleared the Sambisa forest of Boko Haram, the terrorists continue to carry out attacks in the region.