[QODLink]
Africa
Nigerian army arrests 'Boko Haram commander'
Shuaibu Mohammed Bama was detained at the home of a serving senator in the country's northeast, military says.
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2012 03:25
Boko Haram attacked the town of Potiskum on Saturday, leaving at least 23 people dead, medics said [AFP]

A senior member of the Boko Haram armed group has been arrested at the home of a senator in the group's stronghold in northeastern Nigeria, the military said, adding to evidence that the group has ties to government officials.

Sagir Musa, a military spokesperson, said on Saturday that the arrest was made on Thursday in the Boko Haram stronghold of Maiduguri in the country’s northeast.

"Shuaibu Mohammed Bama, who has been on the wanted list lists of terrorists ... was arrested by the task force troops in a serving senator's house," he said.

Musa did not say who the senator was. In January, President Goodluck Jonathan said Boko Haram had infiltrated all levels of government, without giving details.

Boko Haram is fighting to create an Islamic state in Nigeria and its fighters have killed hundreds in bomb and gun attacks since launching an uprising in 2009.

Deadly attacks

The latest development came as hospital officials said that at least 23 people were killed on Saturday after suspected Boko Haram fighters attacked a town in northeastern Nigeria.

Medics said that the fighters had wreaked havoc two days before, destroying several buildings in Potiskum, a town regarded as a hotbed for Boko Haram activity.

At least 2,800 people have died in fighting since Boko Haram's rebellion began, Human Rights Watch (HRW), a global rights group based in the US, said.

A recent crackdown by the military has brought a lull in the more co-ordinated and deadly attacks seen early this year but violence in remote areas of the predominantly Muslim north continues almost daily.

HRW has said that both Boko Haram and Nigerian security forces may have committed crimes against humanity during their conflict. The heavy-handed tactics of the army help feed support for Boko Haram, security experts say.

The latest development came as Gunmen killed eight people in Nigeria's troubled city of Potiskum Saturday, raising the death toll to 31 for three days of violence in the northeastern town, police and residents said.

334

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
Activists say 'Honor Diaries' documentary exploits gender-based violence to further an anti-Islamic agenda.
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
join our mailing list