The US State Department has said the Islamic State in West Africa Province will not get the $7 million bounty it placed on Abubakar Shekau, leader of the Boko Haram sect.
Responding to reports on the death of the terrorist leader, the State Department said the bounty is not meant for a group under ISIS.
“News reports today indicate that Boko Haram terrorist Abubakar Shekau blew himself up in a confrontation with ISIS affiliates. Hey, ISIS guys. To clarify: no – you are not eligible for the reward for information on his identity or location. That’s not how the program works,” the US State Department for justice tweeted.
News reports today indicate that Boko Haram terrorist Abubakar Shekau blew himself up in a confrontation with ISIS affiliates.
Hey, ISIS guys. To clarify: no â you are not eligible for the reward for information on his identity or location. That's not how the program works. pic.twitter.com/rFbHzb5Oou
— Rewards for Justice (@RFJ_USA) May 20, 2021
On June 21, 2012, the US Department of State designated Shekau a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under Executive Order 13224. One year later, a $7 million bounty was placed on him.
“Abubakar Shekau is the leader of Jama’atu Ahl as-Sunnah il-Da’awati wal-Jihad, more commonly known as Boko Haram. Boko Haram, which means ‘Western education is forbidden,’ is a Nigeria-based terrorist organisation that seeks to overthrow the current Nigerian government and replace it with a regime based on Islamic law. The group has existed in various forms since the late 1990s.
“There are reported communications, training, and weapons links between Boko Haram, al-Qaida in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), al-Shabaab, and al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, which may strengthen Boko Haram’s capacity to conduct terrorist attacks,” read the statement Rewards for Justice issued when a bounty was placed on Shekau.
SaharaReporters on Thursday reported that the Boko Haram factional leader who had evaded the Nigerian military for years killed himself during a violent clash between his faction and the ISWAP fighters who overran the Sambisa Forest in Borno State.
Multiple military sources had confirmed to SaharaReporters that Shekau blew himself up with an explosive when it was clear that the ISWAP fighters wanted him to relinquish power to them, after all his commanders were captured and killed in the forest.
The incident took place following the invasion of the terror group’s stronghold in the Sambisa forest area by ISWAP deadlier fighters.
ISWAP, which had broken away from the Shekau-led Boko Haram faction in 2016 after pledging allegiance to the Islamic State, reportedly raided the group’s hideout using no fewer than 50 gun trucks.
According to HumAngle, Shekau’s enclave was tracked down by ISWAP using its forces based in the Timbuktu Triangle. His fighters were killed in the process, followed by a long gunfire exchange between the invading group and Shekau’s bodyguards.
Shekau had been the leader of Boko Haram since 2009 following the death of the group’s founder, Mohammed Yusuf.
He had been rumoured to have been killed by the Nigerian military at least four times between July 2009 and August 2016.
In August 2016, the Nigerian Air Force had claimed he had been “fatally wounded” by military bombardments, but the terror group released a video only a month later showing he was alive.