Response of the International Community to Terrorist Attacks in Africa and Europe: A Focus on Nigeria and France
AbstractWhile terrorism has undoubtedly become a fixed reality on the world stage, its nature and scope continue to change shape from one historical epoch, context and environment to another. Recent decades have witnessed groups of radicalised Islamist fundamentalists unleash all manner of terror attacks on various societies, states and continents around the globe. This article provides a synoptic account of the activities of one such group, Boko Haram, in Nigeria, comparing it with the much publicised Paris terror attacks. The common thread linking these terror cases is a strong Islamist influence behind them, and their ultimate aim of sentencing as many targeted victims as possible to ‘paradise’. This article highlights the dynamics behind the responses of the international community to each of these two cases of terrorism. It shows that while the international media gave much attention to the lesser terror attack in Paris, it has tended to neglect the terror onslaught by Boko Haram in northern and north-eastern Nigeria, where thousands of people are dying yearly. Whereas world leaders have reacted strongly in expressing their concern about the Paris attack, little or no action has been taken by international actors to reduce the progressive regional influence of the Boko Haram sect. This is a call to action for the international community, failing which the world all over may find its security compromised by the likes of Boko Haram.