Nigeria: New gov't reaches out to radical sect

AP News
Posted: May 10, 2011 6:34 AM
Nigeria: New gov't reaches out to radical sect

A newly elected state government in northeast Nigeria says they want to talk with radical sect members a day after a man claiming to speak for the group rejected an amnesty offer.

The Borno state government spokesman says the new administration seeks to calm tensions with the radical sect locally known as Boko Haram.

A man claiming to be a Boko Haram spokesman told the BBC on Monday that the group was rejecting a government amnesty offer.

Government spokesman Inuwa Bwala says they want the group to reconsider their stance and "give us the benefit of the doubt."

Boko Haram members have targeted police and clerics in a string of killings over the last year, and also have attacked churches and engineered a massive prison break.