Little surprise here. Al Qaeda through a previously unknown ‘spokesman’ Mamman Nur has claimed responsibility for the attack against UN headquarters in Nigeria’s capitol Abuja, leaving 23 dead and numerous injured on 26 August 2011.
Nigeria is a structural nightmare, pitting the western and northern parts against the oil rich east that once tired to secede as ‘Biafra’ forty years ago.
The central authority proved unable to reign in the violence in the north where Muslims killed Christians and Christian killed Muslims, and where an easy truce between the two communities never held for long.
In a flash of controlling violence, petty and grand, the government allowed ‘Sha’aria’ law to a status equal to civil and criminal law. The introduction of Muslim law encouraged and fostered and nourished radical Islamist groups that now have become a part of the al Qaeda network in north and west Africa.
Problems gnawing at the body politic and economic of Nigeria since independence now feed ‘terrorism’ with an Islamic face. The central and regional authorities will not step up a ‘war’ that will turn Nigeria into a war zone of indeterminate duration.