A key moment on the Boko Haram timeline occurred in March 2015, when the group pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS). According to Dr. Raymond Gilpin, Dean of Academic Affairs for the Africa Center for Strategic Studies at National Defense University, both groups felt that they “could gain from the publicity” of the announcement. Since then, Boko Haram seems to have strengthened its ties to ISIS, as the group’s “sub-regional ambitions intensified after the pledge,” explains Gilpin. Further, ISIS’ appointment of a new Boko Haram leader “suggests that they might have plans to consolidate their outreach in this part of the world,” Gilpin said in an interview with The Cipher Brief.
- Michael Olufemi Sodipo, “Mitigating Radicalism in Northern Nigeria,” Africa Security Brief No. 26, August 2013.
- Map of Africa’s Active Militant Islamist Groups, Africa Center for Strategic Studies, May 2016.
- Oluwakemi Okenyodo, “Governance, Accountability, and Security in Nigeria,” Africa Security Brief No. 31, June 2016.