North Africa Al-Qaeda Sharing Money And Bombs With Boko Haram – US

Commander of the U.S. military’s Africa command, General Carter Ham has warned that three of Africa’s largest militant Islamist groups, Al-Qaeda in North Africa, Nigeria’s Boko Haram and Somalia’s al-Shabab are trying to co-ordinate their efforts which could signal a dangerous escalation of security threats on the continent.

Gen Ham said North African al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) was probably sharing explosives and funds with Nigeria’s Boko Haram.

The three organisations are said to be the continent’s most violent and they are believed to be sharing money and explosive materials while training fighters together.

A Reuters reports on Monday quoted Ham who spoke at an African Centre for Strategic Studies seminar for senior military and civilian officials from Africa, the United States and Europe as saying that, “Each of those three organisations is by itself a dangerous and worrisome threat.

“What really concern me are the indications that the three organisations are seeking to coordinate and synchronise their efforts. That is a real problem for us and for African security in general.”

The United States classified three of the alleged leaders of Boko Haram, as “foreign terrorists,” on June 20. But it declined to blacklist the entire organisation to avoid elevating the group’s profile internationally.

The group is responsible for several attacks and deaths in the country’s northern region, including the UN house, Police Headquarters in Abuja.

Islamist militant group al Shabaab is active in war-ravaged Somalia and has been blamed for attacks in Kenya. Last year it claimed responsibility for the death of Somali Interior Minister, Abdi Shakur Sheikh Hassan.

Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, an affiliate of al Qaeda based in North Africa, is mainly a criminal organisation operating in the Sahel region. It kidnaps Westerners for ransom and aids Africa’s drug trade, according to intelligence officials.

The U.S. and regional officials fear that a power vacuum in northern Mali following a military coup in March may open an expanded area of operations for Islamist militants. Some western diplomats talk of the country becoming a “West African Afghanistan.”

Ham said AQIM was now operating “essentially unconstrained” throughout a large portion of northern Mali, where Islamists have imposed a harsh version of Shariah law.

“The group was a threat not only to the countries in the region, but also has “a desire and intent to attack Americans as well. So that becomes a real problem,” Ham said.

Emphasising that the U.S. military played mainly a supporting role in Africa, he said “This is an African-led effort. It is the African Union increasingly taking a leadership role with a little bit of support from the United States military. We think that is the right approach,” Ham said.

Meanwhile, Ham said on Monday that the U.S. military was increasing its operations on the continent as terrorist groups began to work closer together to carry out attacks in the region.

He said the terrorist threat in Africa was growing and that the U.S. forces under his command were focused on al Shabab, al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb in the north, and Boko Haram.

The US new defence strategy calls for a greater focus on Africa, but only with a limited presence of U.S. personnel to train and assist the militaries of countries on the continent to counter security threats.


[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]

Meet Crown Prince Salman, Saudi Arabia’s Heir to the Throne

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia announced on Monday that Prince Salman bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud would be the new heir to the throne, after the sudden death of previous crown prince Nayef on Saturday. Prince Salman’s elevation to the next in line to the throne was not entirely unexpected — as a well-respected Minister of Defense and half brother to the current king, he was one of the top choices Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]


Rodney King, the black man who came to symbolize racial tensions in the United States after his 1991 beating by police led to riots in Los Angeles a year later, was found dead in a swimming pool on Sunday in Rialto, California, police said. He was 47.

“Preliminary indications are that this is a drowning with no signs of foul play,” Rialto police said in a statement. Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]


Skymark Airlines, a budget carrier in Japan, has introduced an eight-point “Service Concept” guideline aboard flights warning passengers that they are not to complain to airline staffers, under threat of being kicked off the plane.

According to Skymark’s guidelines, the main explanation is that first and foremost, the crew’s job is to address safety issues. Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]


Former Egyptian President, Hosni Mubarak has been sentenced to life imprisonment for complicity in the murder of civilian protesters during last year’s revolution that forced him from power.

84 years old Mubarak becomes the first Arab leader to be tried in his country by an ordinary court since the rise of the Arab revolution which swept away four entrenched rulers. Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]


Interim Mali President Dioncounda Traore has been taken to hospital with a head wound after being attacked by demonstrators, medical sources say.

He was reportedly unconscious when he arrived at hospital.

The army says they shot dead three people during mass protests by supporters of March’s coup who were angry at a deal for Mr Traore, 70, to remain in office for a year. Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]



President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has congratulated Francois Hollande, the President-elect of France on his victory in Sunday’s run-off presidential elections and  also salutes the people of France on the success of the elections which he describes as not only a triumph of democracy but also a clear testimony to the maturity and age-long tradition of democracy in France. Read more

[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]