The Role of Diplomacy in the Security Situation in the North of Nigeria: Case Study of Boko Haram

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Abah, Ene Tammy
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University of Malta; DiploFoundation
Nigeria, once a safe haven save for incidents from time to time, has suddenly been put under focus for insecurity; indiscriminate killings, kidnappings and other activities which are all products of local grievances. Insecurity has slowly built up from the Niger Delta in the South where oil is produced to the North. A group under the cover of Islam called the Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-jihad [People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet’s Teachings and Jihad] commonly referred to as Boko Haram [Western education is forbidden] emerged condemning everything that Western countries stand for especially Western education. The destruction of anything belonging to, and bodies associated to the West in Nigeria became their aim. Their fight and demands however shifted focus slightly as they also demanded that the entire country practice sharia law among other things. The group’s mode of operation is well planned attacks using bombs, guns and other. The pathway to resolving the crisis, as Nigeria is yet to come to terms with such insurgencies, has not been concrete. Diplomacy however may have a role to play in the situation as it will give room for the group to air its grievances. Whether diplomacy has so far helped, the methods used as well as what can possibly be improved are some of the things this study will examine.