Boko Haram Militants Kill 23 U.S.-Backed Chadian Soldiers

Abubakar Shekau, the leader of one of two Boko Haram factions, from a video published on November 9, 2018
Boko Haram video

Boko Haram militants killed at least 23 Chadian soldiers on Thursday in what appears to be the latest deadly attack by the Islamic caliphate, Reuters reported Friday.

Chadian security forces close to the agency confirmed that the attack took place in the town of Dangdala, near the banks of Lake Chad. The assailants reportedly crossed the border from Niger before attacking a team of Chadian soldiers at around 1:25 a.m. At least 23 people have died, making it the deadliest Boko Haram attack in Chad to date.

The Chadian soldiers were part of a U.S.-trained West African military force tasked with eradicating Boko Haram, a Nigerian terrorist organization attempting to create an Islamic caliphate across West Africa.

About 30,000 people have been killed and a further two million have been displaced since Boko Haram began its initial insurgency in Nigeria nearly 10 years ago. Its activities have since spread to neighboring countries including Chad, Niger, and Cameroon.

In 2017, regional governments established the five-nation Sahel Force of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger, However, Boko Haram still controls large swathes of territory, and regularly launch attacks against Christian communities and those who do not adhere to their form of Sunni Islam.

Just this week, the group launched an attack in a Christian-majority town in northeast Nigeria, leaving an unknown number of casualties and sending residents fleeing for the surrounding mountains. Christians make up a slight majority (51.3 percent) of Nigeria’s overall population and are concentrated primarily in the south, while Muslims comprise of 45 percent of the population and live principally in the north and middle belt.

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