Boko Haram Falls Victim to a Food Shortage of It's Own Making

Mar 07, 2016 12:27 PM EST | By Josine Macaspac (

Islamic extremist group Boko Haram has been responsible for a series of terror attacks in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. Reports of killings and abductions have reached thousands and the number of people getting displaced from their homes has already reached millions.

In one of the group's latest attacks, New York Times report that Boko Haram has a new objective - they are rounding up food instead of people. They are suffering from a food crisis that they have mostly created.

According to the governor of the Far North region of Cameroon, Midjiyawa Bakari, "They need food. They need to eat." "They're stealing everything." He adds.

Due to the terror that the group has spread within the region, farmers are leaving their homes and farms to seek safety and shelter. Markets are closed because there's no food to sell. If there were any food to sell, people have been scared off by the string of suicide bombings.

Associated Press reports that according to the military and a civilian self-defense fighter, dozens of emaciated-looking Boko Haram members begging for food have surrendered in Northeast Nigeria.

According to a senior officer, seventy-six people including children and women gave themselves up to soldiers in Gwoza, about 100 kilometers southeast of Maiduguri, the birthplace of Boko Haram. Many more want to surrender according to a civilian self-defense fighter who helped escort the detainees.

The Nigerian military has employed tactics to cut the group's supply line. According to military spokesman Brig. Gen. Rabe Abubakar "Their supply routes are blocked." "They're hungry." He adds.

According to the State Department review, it estimates that Boko Haram has stolen at least 4,200 cattle in Cameroon. In one attack, the group stole a dozen bicycles, wheelbarrows, and 150 small animals like sheep and goat. They also kidnapped six people to help heard the animals back into Nigeria. The review also said that the hunt for food is partly the reason for the group pushing deeper into Cameroon.

Boko Haram was declared the deadliest of all terror groups in 2014 even more so than the Islamic State. In 2015, Boko Haram has allied itself with the Islamic State.

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