The nations involved in fighting Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram have agreed to fight across borders until the militants are defeated, reports the BBC.
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Since Nigerian President Muhammadu Bahari took office, trust and cooperation has reportedly prevailed among the nations of Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad, and Niger, engendering the decision that the Multinational Joint Taskforce will fight across borders until Boko Haram is no more.
This week, Nigerian Presidential Spokesman Garba Shehu said, “All the countries agreed this operation will not recognise international boundaries — wherever terrorists are they will be chased to these locations and they will be fought until they are finished.”
The announcement came just before President Buhari’s traveled to Cameroon, with the neighboring nation also announcing that they will be adding 2,000 troops to the anti-Boko Haram effort along the border it shares with Nigeria.
Cameroon has been in the crosshairs of Boko Haram’s wrath since joining forces with Nigerians this year.
In fact, one of the first major wins against the terrorists came at the hands of the Cameroonian military in January, when they killed 143 militants.
But the win put Cameroon and neighboring countries Niger and Chad squarely on Boko Haram’s retribution list, causing the nations to also become the targets of terrorism.
Most recently, this past Saturday, police officers arrested two men who were reportedly carrying bags full of explosives in the city of Yaounde. The pair are suspected of attempting a terrorist attack. To date, all of the attacks Boko Haram has unleashed against Cameroon have taken place along the border in the North.
Next month, the Multinational Joint Taskforce will become “fully operational” with nearly 9,000 troops released to fight the militants.
On Wednesday, during President Buhari’s visit in Cameroon, which will end on Thursday after a joint press conference with Cameroonian President Paul Biya, he spoke about the 40,000 Nigerian refugees who are currently living in Cameroon, adding, “We also have about 1.5 million Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria and we have a programme of rehabilitation and reintegration into the society for them, which involves providing shelter and schools to the displaced persons,’’ according to Premium Times NG.
President Buhari also declared that the Boko Haram scourge would be brought to an end, “We are determined to end this callousness against our innocent citizens.
“The defence of the territorial integrity of Nigeria and the protection of lives and properties of Nigerians and all those who live in the country are out top priorities.
“We shall explore all reasonable options to enable us to bring this rebellion to an end.”