Boko Haram’s Shekau reappears ‘looking dejected’ in new video

A file picture of a screengrab taken on October 2, 2014 from a video released by the Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram and obtained by AFP shows Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau gesturing as he delivers a speech. Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau appeared on video for the first time in more than a year on Thursday. PHOTO | AFP

What you need to know:

  • Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau appeared on video for the first time in more than a year on Thursday, rejecting rumours about his death but appearing to signal his time in charge of the Nigerian jihadist group may be coming to an end.
  • In a message that contained none of the defiant bluster, taunts and denunciation of political leaders of previous videos and will likely be interpreted as an admission of defeat, the dejected-looking Shekau declared in the Hausa language: “For me the end has come”.
  • A military source in the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, in northeast Nigeria, told AFP: “Watching Shekau in this video, the message is clear: the game is over.
  • “For this arrogant and boastful terrorist to speak in such a meek and subdued tone shows he has been trounced beyond his imagination".
  • Unlike messages from the Islamists at the end of 2014 and start of 2015, which were slickly edited and closely resembled those of the Islamic State group, the new video was poorly shot.

KANO, Nigeria, Thursday

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