LIBERIA: News Of Boko Haram ‘Next Door’ Is Worrisome, Liberians Expressing Fear

Recent declaration by the newly appointed Executive Director of the Executive Protection Services (EPS), Frank Nyekan that Liberia is being used as a hide-out for leaders of Nigeria Islamic terrorist group Boko-Haram during his confirmation hearing at the Liberian Senate Committee on National Security early this week seems to worry many Liberians and foreign residents on this revelation.

Since this revelation was made by Mr. Nyekan, residents of Monrovia and its environs have taken note of its implication to national security, especially when report of boarder attacks by armed men between the Liberian and Ivorian border is being heard on a daily basis.

In his statement to the Senate Committee on National Security, Mr. Nyekan said. "Terrorism is spreading now. Nobody needs to tell you that Boko-Haram is next door in Nigeria. Some are using Liberia as a sleep-out where they come and sleep when they do their thing. They come as Nigerian businessmen to sleep after a period of time; they lost and returned to Nigeria. They commit the act, when they are being searched for, they run to Liberia. From Liberia to Nigeria is not far. You have to look at it critically because the election is coming; you need protection here and at home. There is a need for some kind of legislation that will protect Legislators."

Boko Haram is an Islamic militant and terrorist organization based in the northeast of Nigeria. Founded by Mohammed Yusuf in 2002, the organization seeks to establish a "pure" Islamic state ruled by Sharia Law putting a stop to what it deems "Westernization." The group is known for attacking Christians and government targets, bombing churches, attacking schools and police stations, kidnapping western tourists, but has also assassinated members of the Islamic establishment. Violence linked to the Boko Haram insurgency has resulted in an estimated 10,000 deaths between 2001 and 2013.

Reports also coming out of Monrovia speak of growing fear amongst Liberians, who report said are on the alert daily; by observing strange visitors arriving in the respective localities.

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