In a new Boko Haram video obtained by AFP yesterday, Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau dismissed claims about ceasefire talks between his group and the government. The video also showed militants on an armoured vehicle parading down a road in an unidentified town they claim to be controlling and the group’s leader Abubakar Shekau preaching to the residents.
Boko Haram had already renamed Gwoza in Borno as Darul Hikma or House of Wisdom and Mubi in Adamawa as Madinatul Islam which means City of Islam.
In the 44-minute video, Shekau, who is pictured in close-up shots dismissed government claims about ceasefire talks and threatened to kill the man who presented himself as Boko Haram’s negotiator.
The video, which was delivered through the same channels as past messages, shows armed men lined along a well-paved road, with three pick-up trucks, with heavy weapons also visible.
Black crested flags associated with the Islamist group are also shown.
In the video, Shekau restated a call he first made in August, saying, “We have indeed established an Islamic caliphate. To everyone living in Islamic Caliphate, we convey our greetings,” he said, specifically mentioning “brethren” in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Shishan (an Islamist term for Chechnya), Yemen, Somalia and “The caliphate in Iraq and Syria.”
A graphic shown later includes a picture the IS group’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as well as a portion of the message his group issued on July 1 proclaiming a caliphate in Iraq and Syria.
Iraq on Sunday was investigating whether Baghdadi was killed in air strikes by US-led coalition warplanes.
Nigeria maintains it is still negotiating with Boko Haram envoys in neighbouring Chad and that a disputed October 17 ceasefire declaration remains viable.
Violence has however continued and the Islamists are believed to control more than two dozen towns and villages in the northeast.
“There is no truce between me and Nigerian tyrants,” Shekau said, dismissing the credibility of Danladi Amhadu, the purported rebel negotiator.”
“This person Danladi… if he thinks he can, let him show his face. By Allah, we will kill him,” the Islamist leader said