U.S. Labels Nigerian-Based Groups as Terrorist Organizations

The State Department says more action is needed.

President Barack Obama talks on the phone with FBI Director Robert Mueller to receive an update on the explosions that occurred in Boston, in the Oval Office, April 15, 2013. Seated with the President are Lisa Monaco, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, and Chief of Staff Denis McDonough.
National Journal
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Jordain Carney
Nov. 13, 2013, 10:51 a.m.

The State De­part­ment an­nounced Wed­nes­day that Boko Haram and An­saru, a splinter or­gan­iz­a­tion, have been des­ig­nated as “for­eign ter­ror­ist or­gan­iz­a­tions” and “spe­cially des­ig­nated glob­al ter­ror­ists.”

The de­part­ment, in a re­lease, called the move “an im­port­ant and ap­pro­pri­ate step.” The des­ig­na­tions make it il­leg­al to know­ingly aid, give re­sources to, or en­gage in fin­an­cial trans­ac­tions with the Ni­geri­an-based groups. It also al­lows the Treas­ury De­part­ment to place a freeze on as­sets with­in U.S. jur­is­dic­tion.

The two groups have been tied to nu­mer­ous at­tacks, in­clud­ing those against for­eign na­tion­als, mosques, and Ni­geri­an se­cur­ity forces.

“These des­ig­na­tions demon­strate our strong sup­port for Ni­ger­ia’s fight against ter­ror­ism and its ef­forts to ad­dress se­cur­ity chal­lenges in the north,” Lisa Monaco, an as­sist­ant to Pres­id­ent Obama for home­land se­cur­ity and coun­terter­ror­ism, said in a state­ment.

She noted that the pres­id­ent met with Ni­geri­an Pres­id­ent Good­luck Jonath­an earli­er this year and urged his gov­ern­ment to take coun­terter­ror­ism meas­ures against the or­gan­iz­a­tions, while also pro­tect­ing hu­man rights.


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