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Boko Haram members debut on U.S. terrorist list

The U.S. State Department has, for the first time, included members of the Nigerian sect Boko Haram as "Specially Designated Global Terrorists": The Department of State designated Abubakar Shekau, Abubakar Adam Kambar, and Khalid al-Barnawi as Specially Designated Global Terrorists under section 1(b) of Executive Order 13224. Shekau is the most visible leader of the ...

The U.S. State Department has, for the first time, included members of the Nigerian sect Boko Haram as "Specially Designated Global Terrorists":

The Department of State designated Abubakar Shekau, Abubakar Adam Kambar, and Khalid al-Barnawi as Specially Designated Global Terrorists under section 1(b) of Executive Order 13224. Shekau is the most visible leader of the Nigeria-based militant group Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad, commonly referred to as Boko Haram. Khalid al-Barnawi and Abubakar Adam Kambar have ties to Boko Haram and have close links to al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb, a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization.[…]

The designation under E.O. 13224 blocks all of Shekau’s, Kambar’s and al-Barnawi’s property interests subject to U.S. jurisdiction and prohibits U.S. persons from engaging in transactions with or for the benefit of these individuals. These designations demonstrate the United States’ resolve in diminishing the capacity of Boko Haram to execute violent attacks. The Department of State took these actions in consultation with the Departments of Justice and Treasury.

Boko Haram claimed responsibility today for attacks that have left 40 people dead in Northeast Nigeria this week. More than 640 people have been killed in attacks by the group this year. 

Interestingly the State Department has not yet taken the more sweeping step of labeling the group as a whole a "Foreign Terrorist Organization". According to Reuters, this reflects a desire "not to elevate the group’s profile."

That makes some sense, though Boko Haram would certainly seem to be a more active threat than such largely-defunct groups as the Tamil Tigers, Aum Shinrikyo or Sendero Luminoso.

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