MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — An alleged member of the radical Islamist sect Boko Haram has set conditions for peace talks with Nigeria's government.
The man, who identified himself as Abu Mohammed Ibn Abdulaziz, spoke to journalists via a telephone conference call Thursday in Maiduguri, the spiritual home of Boko Haram. He said the dialogue must be in Saudi Arabia and include negotiators like former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari.
The call came through the channels that Boko Haram usually communicates with journalists. However, Abdulaziz spoke entirely in English, which is unusual for the sect. Also, journalists ordinarily hear from a spokesman who uses the nom de guerre Abul Qaqa in such calls.
Boko Haram is blamed for killing more than 720 people this year alone in its bloody guerrilla fight with Nigeria's weak central government.