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Nigeria: Final Onslaught - Boko Haram Killing ’Wives’ to Prevent Marriage to ’Unbelievers’

Saturday 21 March 2015, by siawi3

Source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201503200133.html

20 March 2015

By Chika Otuchikere, George Agba, Kareem Haruna, Tunde Oguntola with Agency Report

Boko Haram insurgents in the town of Bama, Borno State, have slaughtered their wives as Nigerian soldiers continue to rout them in the North East. Some of them later moved to Gwoza, another Borno town, where they vowed to defend the capital of their so-called Islamic Caliphate with the last drop of their blood, the Agency France Presse (AFP) reports.

Witnesses who recounted the massacres said that the insurgents feared they would be killed by advancing soldiers or separated from their wives when they flee the town.

“Consequently, they killed their wives so that the women would not get remarried to unbelievers if their husbands die in the fierce battles with Nigerian soldiers,” said a witness who had just arrived in Maiduguri from Bama, a major battlefront in the continuing military operations to dislodge the insurgents from Yobe, Adamawa and Borno.

According to the report, the insurgents told their ill-fated wives: “We will not spare anyone of you because if unbelievers marry you, when we get to heaven, there is no way we can meet again. So we are doing this so that we can meet in heaven.”

The terrorists said they would not allow their wives to be married to ’infidels’, the report said.

Nigeria’s military, along with forces from neighbouring Cameroon, Chad and Niger, have claimed huge victories over the insurgents in recent weeks but defenceless civilians still face serious threats.

Boko Haram fighters have received word of a military assault on Bama, formerly an Islamist stronghold in Borno State.

The insurgents had decided to flee to the nearby town of Gwoza before the troops’ arrival but they first decided to kill their wives so that nobody would remarry them.

Boko Haram forcibly married scores of women in Bama after seizing it in September. Nigeria’s military announced the recapture of the town on Monday.

Witnesses who were taken under military protection this week to Borno’s capital, Maiduguri, 73 kilometres (45 miles) away, said the killing of women began 10 days before Bama was liberated.

The Islamists said if they kill their wives, “they would remain pious until both of them meet again in heaven, where they would re-unite,” said Salma Mahmud, another witness.

“He informed them of the situation and the consequence of the takeover of the town by the advancing troops. He warned them that when soldiers killed them, they would take their wives back to the society where they would be forced to marry and live with infidels. The commander said it would be better for them to kill their wives and send them to heaven,” the mother-of-seven said.

A number of women were shot dead in front of the commander’s house, the report said.

Nigeria’s national security spokesman, Mike Omeri, told AFP he would try to verify the reports while the military could not immediately be reached for comment.

Boko Haram regroups, return to liberated towns

Diehard members of Boko Haram in Borno State have allegedly been regrouping in the last few days even as they have returned to the border town of Gamboru-Ngala where they have killed at least 11 persons, security sources said.

A soldier, who confirmed this to newsmen in Maiduguri but pleaded for anonymity because he was not allowed to speak to press, said the gunmen attacked Gamboru town in the evening of Wednesday.

“We heard some Boko Haram returned to Gamboru and attacked the place”, said the soldier. “The insurgents, according to the information, killed about 11 people who just returned from Fotokol, a neighbouring Cameroonian town about three kilometres away”, the source added.

Jonathan In Yobe, Promises To Crush Boko Haram Completely
President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday in Damaturu, the Yobe State capital, assured the people of the North East that the federal government was committed to completely wiping out the Boko Haram sect from both the zone and the entire country.

The president, who was in the state for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential campaign rally, stated that the country was yet to be completely rid of the insurgents because some of them live among the people.

Speaking earlier when the PDP campaign train paid a courtesy visit to the emir of Damaturu, Alhaji Shehu Hashemu II, Jonathan condoled with the people of Yobe and families that lost relations to the insurgency.

He said, “We are not yet completely saved from the hands of these criminal elements because some of them are living with us. They can sneak in and with their improvised explosive devices cause damage, especially at soft targets, but we are working day and night, both the security services and the intelligence services, to make sure that we continue to clean our country until we get this Boko Haram menace behind us.”

“Fortunately we are here today. So, thank you for the patience and thank you for the reception. For me, I am a member of the emirate council as a title holder; I am in my palace”, he stated.

The president told the royal father and the people of Yobe State that PDP meant well for Nigeria country, adding that for the past four years, as a government the party had done well and was willing to do even more if re-elected.

Later at the conclusion of his presidential campaign rally in the 36 states of the federation, which took place at the Yobe Township stadium, Jonathan declared that the federal government will not allow the Boko Haram sect to take over any territory in Yobe State again.
On his part, the Emir of Damaturu thanked President Jonathan for siting a federal university in Gashua, for his good leadership and for waging a successful war against terrorism.

Scores Of Corpses Found Inside Bama Wells

A security source close to the military contingent which recaptured Bama Town in Borno State has revealed that troops found scores of dead bodies in Bama Wells.

According to the source, the recapture of Bama has led to the discovery of horrendous atrocities perpetrated by terrorists while they held the town, and as they fled.

“A large number of dead bodies were discovered in wells, apparently of some of their hostages or those who resisted them,” the source said.

Aside victims whose bodies were thrown into wells, others were also said to have been executed on the River Bama Bridge as the terrorists fled the town. Civilians cooperating with troops were said to have also narrated horrendous tales of the brutality of the terrorists while they held sway, executing their own version of religious jurisprudence.