Washington DC [US], May 22 (ANI/Sputnik): Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is dead after he detonated a suicide vest during an ambush by his rival Islamic State terror group, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday citing Nigerian officials and intelligence it reviewed from a West African spy agency.
The report said hundreds of Islamic State fighters attacked Shekau's base in the Timbuktu region of the Sambisa Forest on Wednesday.
In 2015, Shekau pledged allegiance to the Islamic State and Boko Haram rebranded itself as the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP). However, internal disputes that involved the Islamic State naming another leader to lead ISWAP pushed Shekau to reassume the leadership role of the Boko Haram faction.
Boko Haram has operated in northeast Nigeria and several other Western African nations, conducting numerous deadly attacks and abductions, since it initiated an Islamic insurgency in 2009. (ANI/Sputnik)