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Cash economy is a major factor encouraging Boko Haram activities - UN

Cash economy is a major factor encouraging Boko Haram activities - UN

- The United Nations has said cash economy is encouraging Boko Haram activities

- It says the activities of Boko Haram and other terrorist groups are increasing due to funds sent to them by non-governmental organisations

- The UN says terrorist groups also get funds by kidnapping for ransom

The predominance of the cash economy is a major factor fuelling the nefarious activities of the Boko Haram and other terrorist groups in the Lake Chad Basin region, a UN report has revealed.

NAN reports that this was contained in the 22nd report of the Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team, pursuant to resolution 2368 (2017) concerning Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Al-Qaida and associated individuals and entities. gathers that the report was submitted to the security council committee pursuant to resolutions 1267 (1999), 1989 (2011) and 2253 (2015) concerning ISIL, Al-Qaida and associated individuals, groups, undertakings and entities.

The UN said the number of doctrinally based non-governmental organisations sending funds to local terrorist groups was growing, and member states were concerned that radicalisation was increasing the threat level in the Sahel.

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The report said: “Meanwhile, Boko Haram and the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) have had a similar impact in their areas of control, including the Lake Chad basin.

“The predominance in the region of the cash economy, without controls, is conducive to terrorist groups funded by extortion, charitable donations, smuggling, remittances and kidnapping. In Nigeria, 111 schoolgirls from the town of Dapchi were kidnapped on 18 February 2018 and released by ISWAP on 21 March 2018 in exchange for a large ransom payment."

The UN Security Council had last week said it remained concerned by the security and humanitarian situation caused by the Boko Haram terrorists and other armed groups in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad.

In a presidential statement, the 15-member body regretted that Central African countries were beset by ongoing terrorist activity, instability and the effects of climate change, and asked secretary-general, Antonio Guterres, to review the work of the UN regional office for Central Africa (UNOCA), and recommend areas for improvement.

The presidential statement read: “The Security Council strongly condemns all terrorist attacks carried out in the region, including those perpetrated by Boko Haram and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as Daesh).

“These attacks have caused large-scale and devastating losses, have had a devastating humanitarian impact including through the displacement of a large number of civilians in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad, and represent a threat to the stability and peace of West and Central Africa.

“The Council notes with particular concern the continuing use by Boko Haram of women and girls as suicide bombers, which has created an atmosphere of suspicion towards them and made them targets of harassment and stigmatisation in affected communities, and of arbitrary arrests by security forces."

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Meanwhile, previously reported that a representative of the United Nations (UN) said the Boko Haram group had been weakened but not yet defeated by the Nigerian forces.

The UN secretary-general for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS), Mohammed Ibn Chambers, told journalist on Tuesday, May 8, that Boko Haram still constituted a grave threat to the stability and survival of people in the Lake Chad region.

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