(Un)Willing to Die: Boko Haram and Suicide Terrorism in Nigeria

Although the BH had incubated in northern Nigeria for over a decade, it was not until July 2009 when it provoked a short-lived anti-government uprising in northern Nigeria that it became a subject of serious security concern in national and international security desks.


Suicide terrorism anywhere in the world encapsulates a common paradox: a mixture of those who are willing to die and those who are unwilling to die. While those who are willing to die are the suicide terrorists, the victims of such act of terror constitute those who are unprepared to die. This infamous reality has become the latest of many nightmares that Nigerians face, given the ramping up of suicide attacks by the extremist Islamic sect, Boko Haram (henceforth BH). Although the BH had incubated in northern Nigeria for over a decade, it was not until July 2009 when it provoked a short-lived anti-government uprising in northern Nigeria that it became a subject of serious security concern in national and international security desks. The 2009 revolt ended when its charismatic leader, Mohammed Yusuf, was finally captured and later brutally murdered by the Nigerian police. 

Following the death of Yusuf and the mass killings and arrest of many of their members, the sect retreated and re-strategised in two ways. First was the adoption of Yusuf’s hard-line deputy, Abu-Mohammad Abubakar ibn Mohammad al-Shakwi (Abubakar Shekau), alias “Darul Tawheed”, as its new spiritual leader. Second was the redefinition of its tactics, which involved perfecting its traditional hit-and-run tactics and adding new flexible violent tactics, such as placement of improvised explosive devices (IEDs), targeted assassination, drive-by shooting and suicide bombings. 

Particularly worrisome is the adoption of suicide bombing, which has further created a deep sense of insecurity and psychological trauma among the members of the public. This article discusses the evolving threat of suicide bombing by the sect, highlighting the various modes of its suicide attacks. It also proffered recommendations that could help stem the threat.  

Understanding the Boko Haram

Most local and foreign media trace the origin of the BH to 2002. However, its true historical root dates back to 1995, when Abubakar Lawan established the Ahlulsunna wal’jama’ah hijra or Shabaab group (Muslim Youth Organisation) in Maduigiri, Borno State. It flourished as a non-violent movement until when Mohammed Yusuf assumed leadership of the sect in 2002. Over time, the group has metamorphosed under various names like the Nigerian Taliban, Muhajirun, Yusufiyyah sect, and BH. The sect, however, prefers to be addressed as the Jama’atu Ahlissunnah Lidda’awati wal Jihad, meaning a "People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet's Teachings and Jihad".

The sect treats anything western as completely un-Islamic. It considers western influence on Islamic society as the basis of the religion’s weakness. Hence the sect’s declaration that conventional banking, taxation, jurisprudence, western institutions and particularly western education are infidel and as such must be avoided by Muslims.[1] Its ideological mission is to overthrow the secular Nigerian state and impose strict Islamic Sharia law in the country. Its members are motivated by the conviction that the Nigerian state is a cesspit of social vices, thus ‘the best thing for a devout Muslim to do was to “migrate” from the morally bankrupt society to a secluded place and establish an ideal Islamic society devoid of political corruption and moral deprivation’.[2] Non-members were therefore considered as kuffar (disbelievers; those who deny the truth) or fasiqun (wrong-doers).  

The BH was led by Ustaz Mohammed Yusuf until his death just after the July 2009 uprising. Before his death, Muhammad Yusuf was the Commander in Chief (Amir ul-Aam) or leader of the sect, and had two deputies (Na’ib Amir ul-Aam I & II). Each state where they existed had its own Amir (commander/leader), and each local government area where they operated also had an Amir. They also organised themselves according to various roles, such as soldiers and police, among others.[3] In the aftermath of Yusuf’s death, one of his deputies, Abubakar Shekau, became the new spiritual leader of the sect. Abubakar Shekau inherited, if not modified, the organisational structure of the sect. Under Shekau, the sect maintains a loose command-and-control structure, which allows it to operate autonomously. It now operates in some sort of cells and units that are interlinked, but generally, they take directives from one commander.[4] As shown in figure 1, Shekau now heads an 18-member Shura Consultative Council that authorises the growing sophisticated attacks by various cells of the sect since the July 2009 revolt. 

Figure 1: Hypothetical Organisational Structure of the BH under Abubakar Shekau

Figure 1: Hypothetical Organisational Structure of the BH under Abubaker Shekau

Source: Author’s elaboration

At its early stage, the sect was entrenched in Borno, Yobe, Katsina, and Bauchi states. Over time it has recruited more followers and established operating cells in almost all northern states, probably nursing the intention to spread further South. It draws its members mainly from disaffected youths, unemployed graduates and former Almajiris.

The sect finances its activities through several means, but four major streams stand out: payment of membership dues by members; donations from politicians and government officials; financial support from other terrorist group – Al Qaida; and organised crime, especially bank robbery. As security agencies tighten the noose on its funding streams, it is feared that the sect may turn to other criminal activities such as kidnapping, trafficking in SALWs and narcotics, and offering protection rackets for criminal networks to raise funds.[5]

Boko Haram: A History of Violence

The sect’s resort to violence in pursuit of its objective dates back to 24 December 2003 when it attacked police stations and public buildings in the towns of Geiam and Kanamma in Yobe State. In 2004 it established a base called ‘Afghanistan’ in Kanamma village in northern Yobe State. On 21 September 2004 members attacked Bama and Gworza police stations in Borno State, killing several policemen and stealing arms and ammunition. It maintained intermittent hit-and-run attacks on security posts in some parts of Borno and Yobe States until July 2009 when it provoked a major anti-government revolt. The fighting lasted from 26 to 30 July 2009, across five northern states: Bauchi, Borno, Kano, Katsina, and Yobe. Over 1000 persons, mainly the sect’s members, were also killed during the revolt and hundreds of its members were also arrested and detained for formal trial. The revolt ended when their leader, Mohammed Yusuf, was finally captured by the military and handed over to police.  Yusuf was extrajudicial murdered in police custody, although police officials claimed that he was killed while trying to escape. 

Since the July 2009 revolt, the sect has evolved from a group that waged poorly planned open confrontation with state security forces to one that increasingly uses IEDs, guerrilla warfare, targeted assassination, and suicide bombings in its violent campaign. Attacks have focused largely on state security
forces (police, soldiers, civil defence, and prison wardens, among others) and churches, and to a lesser extent on mosques, media houses, community and religious leaders, politicians, and other civilians who they consider as ‘enemies’. A conservative estimate of over 3,000 people had been killed by the sect since 2009. Its occasional dispatch of suicide bombers generates the greatest anxiety in Nigeria. 

Suicide Bombing: Boko Haram’s new Weapon of Choice

Although suicide terrorism has become a key dimension of modern terrorist acts, its application is harks back to ancient practice. Its “use by the Jewish sect of Zealots (Sicari) in Roman-occupied Judea and by the Islamic Order of Assassins (hashashin) during the early Christian Crusades, are legendary examples of its ancient historical root”.[6] Suicide terrorism refers to a form of extremely committed violence carried out in asymmetric fashion by someone who is intent on taking his or her own life or deceived into thinking he or she wants to take his or her own life in order to take the life of another or others.[7] The perpetrator’s ensured death is a precondition for the success of the mission. Thus, the terrorist is fully aware that if he or she does not die, the planned attack will not be implemented.[8] 

The use of suicide bombing is increasingly being embraced by terrorist and extremist groups. For instance, between October 2000 and October 2006 there were 167 clearly identified suicide bomber attacks, with 51 other types of suicide attack.[9] Analysts believe that the shift to suicide terrorism is not only a reaction to increased security and counterterrorism measures, but also the result of an evolution in the ideology of terrorists. In particular, the success and glorification of suicide operatives, such as the September 11 attackers, has been a critical factor in this ideological shift and globalization of martyrdom.[10]

On 16 June 2011, the BH dramatically changed the landscape of internal security in Nigeria when it mounted the first ever suicide bombing at the Police Headquarters in the Federal Capital city, Abuja (henceforth 16/6 bombing).[11] The 16/6 bombing marked a radical departure from BH’s previous operational tactics. On 26 August 2011, it dispatched another suicide bomber that rammed his car into the United Nations building in Abuja, killing 23 people and injuring many others. The UN bombing was devastating evidence that the group aims to internationalize its acts of terror. The sect has since 2011 made suicide bombing a key tactics in its violent campaign, adopting different modes and focusing on diverse military and civilian targets. 

The modes of its suicide attacks have largely involved fitting IEDs on common means of transportation in Nigeria – vehicles, motorcycles and tricycles – or strapped at the body of the suicide operative. The size of the IEDs ranges from small contraptions stuffed into used can drinks to large containers such as cylinders and drums fitted into the boot of a car. Thus, the sect so far has relied
mainly on vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED), twice on body borne improvised explosive device (BBIED), and once each on motorcycle borne improvised explosive device (MBIED) and Tricycle (popularly known as Keke NAPEP) borne improvised explosive device (TBIED). Although data in table 1 is not exhaustive, it listed some of the suicide bombings by the sect.

Table 1: Some Reported Suicide Bombings mounted by the BH (June 2011- Nov 2012)






16 June 2011

Mohammed Manga (35 years old)

VBIED (ash-coloured Honda 86)

Police Headquarters, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja

At least 7 people were killed, about 33 vehicles were burnt beyond
  recognition and over 40 others damaged beyond repair

26 August 2011

Mohammed Abul Barra (27 years old)

VBIED (Honda Accord car)

UN House, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

The explosion killed 24 persons and injured over 100 others.  The building houses over 400 staff of 26 UN
  humanitarian and development agencies. It was the sect’s first attack on an
  international organization

4 November 2011

26-year-old Abi Yusuf

VBIED (black Jeep)

JTF headquarters in Maiduguri, Borno State

The suicide bomber and a soldier died in the attack at the JTF

 26 April 2012

Umaru Mustapha and another unnamed suicide operative

VBIED (Honda Accord (Academy)

SOJ Global Plaza, which houses The Sun,
  Thisday  and Moments
  Newspapers, at Ahmadu Bello Way, Kaduna, Kaduna State

The first suicide bomber exploded his car at the SOJ Global Plaza,
  killing three persons and injuring 25 others. The second suicide bomber
  (Umaru Mustapha) whose car did not explode was handed over to the police

30 April 2012

Names not disclosed or reported

Motorcyle borne Improvised Explosive device (MBIED)

The convoy of Taraba State Police Commissioner, Jalingo, Taraba State

Three suicide bombers riding motorbikes rammed into The convoy of the
  Police Commissioner, killing at least 11 people

3 June 2012

Name not disclosed or reported

VBIED (Honda Civic car)

Harvest Field of Christ Church in Yelwa area of Bauchi,  Bauchi state

A suicide bomber drove into the church premises, killing at least 21 people and injuring 45 others.

13 July 2012


Name not disclosed or reported

A 15-year-old suicide bomber laced his body with explosives (BBIED)

the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Ibn Abubakar Umar Garbai Elkanemi, and the
  deputy governor of the state, Alhaji Zanna Umar Mustapha

At least five people and the suicide bomber died in the attack at the
  central mosque in Maiduguri, Borno State

3 August 2012

Name not disclosed or reported

BBIED (a suicide bomber laced his body with explosives)

The Emir of Fika Alhaji Mohammed Abali Ibn Muhammadu Idrissa, at
  Potiskum mosque, Yobe State

Six people including three civilians, the emir's police orderly and
  two other policemen sustained various degrees of injuries while the suicide
  bomber died in the incident

16 August 2012


TBIED (a tricycle, popularly known as Keke NAPEP)

A patrol vehicle of the JTF in Custom area of Maiduguri

The suicide bomber on a bomb-laden tricycle missed his target and rode
  into a moving Mercedes Benz car. The blast killed the suicide bomber and a
  civilian, while two other people including a soldier sustained injuries

25 November 2012

Names not disclosed or reported

VBIED (a Bus and Toyota Camry car

St. Andrews Protestant Church, Armed Forces Command and Staff College,
  Jaji, Kaduna

The first suicide bomber rammed a bomb-laden bus into the wall of the
  church while the second explosion came about 10 minutes later, killing about
  50 people and injuring several others

Source: Author[12]

The IEDS are usually constructed using powerful explosive substances such as Trinitrotoluene (TNT), Pentaerythritol (PETN) and Ammonia (fertilizers), among others. The operational sophistication the BH has attained in constructing IEDs is one of the main reasons why security experts believe it is receiving enhanced foreign support, possibly from Al Qaeda in the Land of Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). The US Joint IED Defeat Organization revealed that Nigeria witnessed a nearly fourfold jump in the number of IEDs attacks in 2011 (with 196 bomb incidents), compared with 52 incidents in 2010.[13]

Between June 2011 and November 2012, the sect has staged at least 29 suicide attacks in northern Nigeria, with Borno state witnessing the highest number of attacks.[14] While quite a few of these suicide attacks failed woefully, some were partially successful, and majority have been largely successful when assessed on the basis of the number of lives lost, property damaged and the media attention or visibility they attracted to the sect. It is difficult to state the exact number of people killed in these suicide bombings given that some were launched alongside coordinated gun and IEDs attacks. For instance, a wave of coordinated gun, bombings and suicide attacks waged by the sect on 20 January 2012 in Kano, resulted in the death of over 180 persons. Its main targets of suicide attacks are churches and security establishments (military and police stations and barracks). It has equally hit mosques and media houses, among others. 

Like most security establishments in Nigeria, the churches are increasing adopting protective measures like building fences, barricading access roads to churches during worship hours, deploying ‘special congregation security outfits’ to screen worshipers, and creating car lots farther away from church buildings, among others. While these have reduced the casualty level of suicide terrorism, it has not stopped the terrorist’s desperation.

Analysts have identified some factors that could account for the adoption of suicide terrorism by the sect, namely the emergence of a more radical and hard-line leadership of the sect in the aftermath of the July 2009 revolt; the increased counterinsurgency measures put in place by the government to curtail its traditional tactics; improved funding from various sources within and outside Nigeria; and more importantly, its bond with foreign terror groups, leading to increased fanatic indoctrination of its members by experienced ideologues skilled in evoking visions of martyrdom to radicalize recruits.[15] It is claimed that one of the incentives used to radicalize potential suicide bombers is the promise that 70 members of their family shall marry them “72 virgins in paradise”.[16] From the suicide bombings mounted so far, the following can be deduced.

  • The sect has relied largely on BBIEDs, MBIEDs, TBIEDs and VBIEDs,
  • It has targeted States in northern Nigeria, except for Adamawa, Katsina, Kebbi, Gombe, Jigawa, Zamfara States (see figure 2).
  • Its attacks have concentrated mainly on Churches and security establishments.
  • Its suicide operatives are mainly young men (aged 15-35).

Figure 1: Some States the Boko Haram has Mounted Suicide Bombings in Nigeria

Gulf of Guinea map

Source: Author’s elaboration

In this light, some extrapolations or projections can be made. First, the sect may explore new modes of suicide terrorism. Second, it could try to recruit or employ female suicide bombers. Third, the sect may expand its target of suicide attacks to focus on other ‘soft’ targets – banks, entertainment centre and public transport systems, among others. Fourth, it may extend its suicide attacks territorially to southern Nigeria. 

Deployment of State Security Forces to Counter Suicide Terrorism

To degrade the operational capability of the sect, the Nigerian government has adopted several measures, among which include, prosecution of arrested members, deployment of special security forces, temporary closure of parts of borders in northern Nigeria, deportation of illegal immigrants, capacity building of security forces on counter terrorism (CoT) and counterinsurgency (COIN) operations, installation of surveillance equipment, and collaborations with foreign partners. 

Of interest is the establishment in June 2011 of a special Joint Military Task Force comprising of the Army, Navy, Airforce, Police and the State Security Services, known as “Operation Restore Order” (JTORO), with headquarters in Maiduguri, Borno State. However, the extension of the range of attacks by the sect to other states in northern Nigeria such as Kano, Kaduna and Adamawa, among others, has led to the deployment of special security forces in such areas. 

The JTORO offensive against the sect had been partly successfully, especially the use of military patrol vehicles equipped to detect hidden bombs and other weapons within a radius of 50 meters. The vehicles are put on the roads in suspected BH hideouts in densely populated areas of the city and once bombs or weapons are detected, security operatives move into the area to effect arrests and seize weapons. In this way, many leaders of the sect were arrested.[17] Recently, the Nigerian Army unveiled its locally manufactured anti-bombing device called "Vehicle Stopper" to be used especially at worship centres to prevent suicide bombings. The Vehicle Stopper is designed to forestall and immobilise vehicles within a particular range, including those loaded with IEDs.[18] 

The special security forces have also registered successes in terms of arrest and decapitation of Boko Haram operational commanders and strategists. Data in table 2 shows some top commanders or operatives of the sect arrested on killed by security forces.  

Table 2: Major Arrests and Killing of Top Boko Haram Members by Security Forces



Action Taken


16 November 2012

  Ibn Ibrahim

Killed by the JTF in a targeted operation
  in Maiduguri

  is the commander of the sect in charge of the North West and North East, and
  was allegedly responsible for the recent killing of Nigerian Civil War hero,
  Maj.-Gen. Mohammadu Shuwa

  October 2012

  Mohammed Bama

  at the home of a senator in Maiduguri, Borno State

The top commander is alleged to
  have masterminded the bombing of the Mogadishu Barracks Mammy market (31
  December 2010), Police Force Headquarters (16 June 2011) and UN Building (26
  August 2012), all in Abuja, and some churches in Madalla, Niger State

25September  2012

  Yola, alias Abu Jihad

Killed by operatives of the special
  security squad (Operation Restore Sanity) at Mubi, Adamawa State

Abubakar Yola is believed to be one of
  the commanders of the group in Adamawa. About 156 members of the sect were
  also arrested alongside Abubakar

  September  2012


  man alleged to be the ‘Accountant’ of the sect was arrested

The ‘Accountant’ was  arrested in transit between Kano and Zaria, with N4.5
  million cash belonging to the Sect

  September  2012


  (or killed) by the JTF in the Hotoro area of Kano

  Qaqa is a nom de guerre used by the spokesman of the sect, who
  usually confirms attacks by the sect through telephone, text or email
  messages to journalists.

  February 2012

  Umar aka "Kabiru Sokoto",

  by security agents in Mutum Biu, Taraba state

Kabiru Sokoto
  escaped from police custody after his initial arrest on 14 January at the
  Borno State Governor’s Lodge in Abuja.
  He masterminded
  the suicide bombing of St Theresa Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State on 25
  December 2011

14 January 2012


  with Kabir Sokoto in January 2012

  top Boko Haram commander allegedly escaped from police custody in Abuja on 8
  November 2012

September 2011

Ali Saleh

Arrested in Maiduguiri

Ali Saleh is a top operational commander
  of the group in Borno State. He was arrested alongside five other operatives

Source: Author’s compilation from various newspaper reports.

In November 2012, the JTF declared leaders and top commanders of BH sect wanted, with a 50 million naira bounty placed on its spiritual leader, Abubakar Shekau. They promised monetary rewards for information on other leaders as listed in table 3. The JTF also provided three different phone numbers persons with useful information that will lead to the arrest of the BH members can use to contact them. The monetary reward is to motivate people to join in the man-hunt for BH leaders.

Table 3: JTF Monetary Rewards for Information on BH Leaders






Abubakar Shekau

N50 Million


Habibu Yusuf (a.k.a Asalafi)

N25 Million


Khalid Albarnawai

N25 Million


Momodu Bama

N25 Million


Mohammed Zangina

N25 Million

  Haram Commanders














  Mustapha (Massa) Ibrahim



  Suleiman-Habu (a.k.a









  Musa Modu















  Ahmed Mohammed



Notwithstanding the successes of special security forces in northern Nigeria, their deployment has received criticism, however, for harsh tactics that have injured civilians and damaged property. The approach of the security forces has led to unprecedented use of road blocks, cordon-and-search, and total blockade of some roads (especially those close to security establishment), often generating long traffic jam. Particularly worrisome is the accusation of unlawful
killings, dragnet arrests, detention, intimidation and extortion by the security forces. These real or alleged excess undermine public support for security forces. Therefore, if the security forces are to be successful in the future, they must strike the proper balance of winning the hearts and minds of civilians by offering security and using the “stick” to weaken BH’s operational capacity through force and arrests.

Some Policy Recommendations

The desire to prevent terrorism cannot be easily achieved, but some measures when effectively delivered can go a long way to reducing the frequency and success rate of suicide attacks. The following measures would contribute to suppressing suicide terrorism in Nigeria. 

  • Reducing Drivers of Extremism: Government should urgently address the underlying drivers of extremism and violent behaviours, such as widespread poverty, pervasive corruption, unemployment and socio-economic and political exclusion that generate feelings of marginalisation, especially among the youth.
  • Intelligence Gathering: More resources and efforts should focus on gathering and using actionable intelligence to dismantle the sect’s supportive infrastructure – money, training, weapons, explosives, and information, among others. Emphasis should be on building capacity for pre-emptive arrest of adherents and interception of potential suicide operatives through a robust surveillance plan.
  • Enhanced Surveillance: There is the need to increase surveillance routine around vulnerable targets to effectively detect and counter BH strategists who equally adopt mobile, progressive and sophisticated surveillance methods to plan suicide missions.
  • Control of Explosive Materials: Tighten the framework for the regulation of production, importation, transportation, storage, and use of explosive  materials in the country.
  • Counter-Recruitment: Federal and State government agencies should partner with civil society groups and donor agencies to deliver counter-recruitment interventions that focus on vulnerable children and ‘youth at risk’, to distance them from terrorists. Useful intelligence on BH’s recruitment methods can be gleaned through enhanced interrogation techniques from arrested members or reformed members and used to structure counter-recruitment initiatives.
  • De-radicalisation: Security agencies, particularly prison officials should partner with experts on countering violent extremism (CVE) and moderate Islamic scholars to deliver de-radicalisation programmes for arrested jihadist.
  • Diligent prosecution: The Nigerian government should take concrete steps towards prosecuting persons, groups or organizations providing supportive infrastructure to the sect.
  • Professionalization: The capacity of security forces, particularly junior and mid-ranking personnel, needs to be sharpened through regular training and refresher courses for them to effectively balance the imperative of respect for human rights while engaged in CoT and COIN operations.
  • Relaxed or Situation Awareness: People should be encouraged to maintain the habit of security consciousness and situation awareness to better notice and timely report suspicious persons to the appropriate authority. 


The use of suicide terrorism is a tactic that the BH will not drop any time soon. However, reducing or ending such attacks will depend on the capacity of the Nigerian government to timely detect and disrupt plots of suicide attacks. Like the Commander of the United States Africa Command, Gen. Carter Ham, has rightly noted, “although, security forces have a prominent role in addressing Boko Haram, an effective, lasting solution will require a broad-based strategy that addresses the social and economic issues and uses judicial tools to prosecute the perpetrators of violence”. This conclusion is as apt as it is inescapable for the Nigerian government to successfully combat terrorism in the country. 
* Freedom C. Onuoha, is a Research Fellow at the  Centre for Strategic Research and Studies, National Defence College, Abuja, Nigeria.


[1] J. Straziuso, African AQ-Linked groups using advanced IEDs, The Associated Press, 15 March 2012, http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2012/03/ap-military-jieddo-african-al-qaida-linked-groups-using-advanced-ieds-031512w/

[2] Author’s diary.

[3] FC Onuoha, “Boko Haram’s Tactical Evolution”, African Defence Forum, Vol.
4, No. 4, (2011), p.33

[4] PMNews, “boko Haram: Bombers promised 72 Virgins in Heaven”, 6 December 2012, http://pmnewsnigeria.com/2012/12/06/boko-haram-bombers-promised-72-virgins-in-heaven/

[5] T. Sulemain, “Living in the Shadows of Boko Haram”, Tell, 21 November 2011, p.47.

[6] S. Iroegbu, “With new inventions, Army aims to check terror attacks, Thisday, 27 July 2012.

[7] News Diary Online, “JTF Lists 19 Wanted Boko Haram Leaders ,Places Bounty on Shekau ,Others”, 23 November 2012, http://newsdiaryonline.com/jtf-lists-19-wanted-boko-haram-leaders-places-bounty-on-shekau-others/

[8] B. Ganor, “Suicide Attacks in Israel,” in International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism (ICT), Countering Suicide Terrorism: An International Conference, (Herzliyya, Israel: ICT, 2001) p.140

[9] Wikipedia, Suicide attack, 14 August 2011, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suicide_attack

[10] See A. Moghadam “Suicide Terrorism, Occupation, and the Globalization of Martyrdom: A Critique of Dying to Win”, Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, (29): (2006)707–729.

[11] See A. Salkida, “Revealed! The Suicide Bomber”, Blueprint, 26 June 2011, p.1

[12] Author keeps track of suicide attacks reported in the media.

[13] J. Straziuso, African AQ-Linked groups using advanced IEDs, The Associated Press, 15 March 2012, http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2012/03/ap-military-jieddo-african-al-qaida-linked-groups-using-advanced-ieds-031512w/

[14] Author’s diary.

[15] FC Onuoha, “Boko Haram’s Tactical Evolution”, African Defence Forum, Vol. 4, No. 4, (2011), p.33

[16] PMNews, “boko Haram: Bombers promised 72 Virgins in Heaven”, 6 December 2012, http://pmnewsnigeria.com/2012/12/06/boko-haram-bombers-promised-72-virgins-in-heaven/

[17] T. Sulemain, “Living in the Shadows of Boko Haram”, Tell, 21 November 2011, p.47.

[18] S. Iroegbu, “With new inventions, Army aims to check terror attacks, Thisday, 27 July 2012.

[19] News Diary Online, “JTF Lists 19 Wanted Boko Haram Leaders ,Places Bounty on Shekau ,Others”, 23 November 2012, http://newsdiaryonline.com/jtf-lists-19-wanted-boko-haram-leaders-places-bounty-on-shekau-others/

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