March 12, 2015: The Islamic State welcomed a pledge of allegiance made to it by Boko Haram and vowed to press with its expansion, according to a recording on Thursday purportedly from its spokesman.
“We announce to you to the good news of the expansion of the caliphate to west Africa because the caliph … has accepted the allegiance of our brothers of the Sunni group for preaching and the jihad,” Isis spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani said in the message, using the Arabic name for Nigeria’s Boko Haram extremist group.
June 29. 2015: Chibok girls ‘forced to join Nigeria’s Boko Haram’
Some of the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria have been forced to join Islamist militant group Boko Haram, the BBC has been told.
Witnesses say some are now being used to terrorise other captives, and are even carrying out killings themselves.
The testimony cannot be verified but Amnesty International says other girls kidnapped by Boko Haram have been forced to fight.
Boko Haram has killed some 5,500 civilians in Nigeria since 2014.
Two-hundred-and-nineteen schoolgirls from Chibok, are still missing, more than a year after they were kidnapped from their school in northern Nigeria. Many of those seized are Christians.
Three women who claim they were held in the same camps as some of the Chibok girls have told the BBC’s Panorama programme that some of them have been brainwashed and are now carrying out punishments on behalf of the militants.
Seventeen-year-old Miriam (not her real name) fled Boko Haram after being held for six months. She was forced to marry a militant, and is now pregnant with his child.
Recounting her first days in the camp she said: “They told to us get ready, that they were going to marry us off.”
She and four others refused.
“They came back with four men, they slit their throats in front of us. They then said that this will happen to any girl that refuses to get married,”
Faced with that choice, she agreed to marry, and was then repeatedly raped.
“There was so much pain,” she said. “I was only there in body… I couldn’t do anything about it.”
While in captivity, Miriam described meeting some of the Chibok schoolgirls. She said they were kept in a separate house to the other captives.
“They told us: ‘You women should learn from your husbands because they are giving their blood for the cause. We must also go to war for Allah.'”
She said the girls had been “brainwashed” and that she had witnessed some of them kill several men in her village.
“They were Christian men. They [the Boko Haram fighters] forced the Christians to lie down. Then the girls cut their throats.”
An image posted on 21 October by an Isis-linked Twitter feed, with a caption in Arabic calling these children ‘new graduates of Jihad School’
June 29, 2015: Others executed by the violent Islamist group include 86 women and 143 of its own members, according to report
The full scale of Isis’s year of terror has been detailed in a new report that claims the jihadist group has executed more than 3,000 people in the past 12 months – a tally which includes 74 children.
According to a report by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights produced to mark the first anniversary of the establishment of the group’s “caliphate”, Isis has carried out 3,027 execution killings in a year.
Among the thousands of Arab and Kurdish civilians executed by the group in Syria in the last year, 86 were women.
But the violent Islamist group appears to demonstrate a particular interest in children, releasing videos of children fighting in cages and undertaking military training.
The report also details moves undertaken by the group to entice children to join, which include setting up offices ‘cubs of the caliphate’ that recruit children to fight for Isis.
Earlier this month the group reportedly crucified two children for not fasting during Ramadan, the Muslim holy month.
July 1, 2015:
- Khaled Sharrouf left Australia to join ISIS in Syria with Mohammed Elomar
- Then married his 13-year-old daughter Zaynab off to his fellow jihadi fighter
- Jihadi shared image of his then-seven-year-old son holding severed head
- Sharrouf and Elomar are accused of beheading Iraqis, raping Yazidi slaves
June 22, 2015 – Damascus (AFP) – Islamic State group jihadists have mined the spectacular ancient ruins in Syria’s Palmyra, an antiquities official and monitor said Sunday, prompting fears for the UNESCO World Heritage site.
The reports came one month after the extremist group overran the central Syrian city.
Syria’s antiquities chief Maamoun Abdulkarim and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor said that the group had laid mines and explosives in Palmyra?s Greco-Roman ruins.
The Observatory, which relies on a network of sources on the ground, said the explosives were laid on Saturday.
“But it is not known if the purpose is to blow up the ruins or to prevent regime forces from advancing into the town,” said Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman.
He said regime forces had launched heavy air strikes against the residential part of Palmyra in the past three days, killing at least 11 people.
“The regime forces are to the west outside the city, and in recent days they have brought in reinforcements suggesting they may be planning an operation to retake Palmyra,” he added.
A political source told AFP that a leading commander had been dispatched to the region to organise an offensive to recapture and secure Palmyra and several key gas fields nearby.
Abdulkarim also said Sunday he had received reports from Palmyra residents that the ruins had been mined.
“We have preliminary information from residents saying that this is correct, they have laid mines at the temple site,” he told AFP.
“I hope that these reports are not correct, but we are worried.”
He urged “Palmyra’s residents, tribal chiefs and religious and cultural figures to intervene to prevent this… and prevent what happened in northern Iraq”, referring to IS’s destruction of heritage sites there.
“I am very pessimistic and feel sadness,” he added.
– ‘Irreplaceable treasure’ –
IS captured Palmyra, which is famed for its extensive and well-preserved ruins, on May 21.
The group has regularly heavily mined its territory to make it more difficult to recapture.
The city’s fall prompted international concern about the fate of the heritage site described by UNESCO as of “outstanding universal value”.
Before it was overrun, the head of the UN cultural body urged that the ruins be spared, saying they were “an irreplaceable treasure for the Syrian people, and the world”.
IS has released several videos documenting its destruction of heritage sites in Iraq and Syria.
Libya, the gift that keeps on giving:
April 20, 2015: ISIS operatives have executed two groups of prisoners, believed to be Ethiopian Christians, in Libya, according to a video released Sunday by the terror network’s media arm.
The Ethiopian government confirmed Monday that 30 of its citizens were among the two groups, according to the Ethiopian News Agency.
The al-Furqan Media video — which is highly produced and titled “Until There Came to Them Clear Evidence” — shows two groups of men, one in orange jumpsuits and the other in black, being killed at different locations in Libya, according to the video’s narrator.
One group is beheaded on a beach along the Mediterranean Sea, while the other group is shot in Southern Libya, hundreds of miles away.
“All praise be to Allah, the Lord and cherisher of the world and may peace and blessings be upon the Prophet Mohammed. To the nation of the cross, we are back again on the sands, where the companions of the Prophet, peace be upon him, have stepped on before, telling you: Muslim blood that was shed under the hands of your religion is not cheap,” the narrator says in Arabic on the 39-minute video.
The narrator continues, “In fact, their blood is the purest blood because there is a nation behind them (which) inherits revenge. And we swear to Allah: the one who disgraced you by our hands, you will not have safety, even in your dreams, until you embrace Islam.”
But wait, there’s more!