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Why IPOB should be declared Terrorists – Ivan Sheehan tells US Govt.

Why IPOB should be declared Terrorists - Ivan Sheehan tells US Govt.
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The Executive Director of the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Baltimore, Ivan Sheehan, said the government of the United States of America should declare the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, a terrorist organisation.


The American don gave reasons it is necessary for Biden’s government to designate IPOB as a terrorist group.


He said the establishment of the Eastern Security Network (ESN) by IPOB signalled the end of the group’s “pretences of being a peaceful movement”.


Sheehan accused IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu of supporting terrorism and issuing threats via Radio Biafra.


“Nnamdi Kanu, IPOB’s leader, is clearly unconcerned. That he feels no need to even disguise his support of terrorism is worrisome. Though IPOB’s principal aim is to restore a breakaway state of Biafra in the southeastern parts of Nigeria, Mr. Kanu’s rhetoric has become increasingly strident, “I don’t want peaceful actualisation (of Biafra).

“Mr. Kanu has said through his Radio Biafra channel, used to project threats, instructions, and propaganda into Nigeria from the safety of London, “If they don’t (give us Biafra), they will die.”


“Neither does Mr. Kanu make idle threats. The December revelation of IPOB’s 50,000 strong-armed paramilitary wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN), complete with a Swastika-style flag, marked the end to all pretences of being a peaceful movement.


“What had been largely unspoken was publicly declared. Since then, violent IPOB attacks on both security personnel and civilians have surged by a terrifying 59%; deaths by 344%,” he wrote.


Ivan Sheehan further explained that if the secessionist group is tagged with a terror label, it would be difficult for any organisation using the US currency to carry out legal transactions with IPOB adding that such declaration would “hit IPOB’s wallet hard.”


“As soon as the designation is applied, no organisation that utilises U.S. currency would be able to legally conduct transactions with the organisation. By cutting off IPOB’s funding, the U.S. would weaken the 50,000 strong paramilitary outfit, and provide Nigeria’s security forces room to train their sights squarely on ISIS-affiliated Boko Haram in the Northeast of the country.

“Counterterrorism operations against Boko Haram have long been assisted by U.S. agencies working in close coordination with the West African government,” he added.


Recall that in 2017, the Federal Government declared IPOB a terrorist group.


IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu was however, subsequently arrested in Kenya in June, 2021, and presently detained in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).

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