The new Boko Haram leader, Abu Musab al-Barnawi, has vowed to end attacks on mosques and markets used by ordinary Muslims,and reportedly threatened to bomb churches and kill Christians.
According to the Japan Times ,an interview published on Wednesday by the Islamic State group, had al-Barnawi declared a major shift in strategy for Boko Haram which has killed many more Muslims than Christians in attacks in mosques with suicide bombers and gunmen.
As translated on SITE Intelligence Group in the Islamic State newspaper, al-Nabaa, the newspaper quotes the new leader as saying,
“Under my leadership the militants will work to seize back territory. Increasing numbers of youth are joining the cause, though Nigeria’s military reports that hundreds of its fighters have surrendered as aerial bombardments and ground assaults cut supply routes.
“There have been attacks on crowded marketplaces in predominantly Muslim areas and the killings and kidnappings of schoolchildren. “The targeting of students accounts for its nickname Boko Haram, which means Western education is sinful or forbidden.
“They strongly seek to Christianize the society. They exploit the condition of those who are displaced under the raging war, providing them with food and shelter and then Christianizing their children.“The militants will respond to that threat by booby-trapping and blowing up every church that we are able to reach, and killing all of those (Christians) who we find from the citizens of the cross.”