Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau dismissed Nigerian military claims of his death in a new video obtained by AFP on Thursday and said the militants had implemented strict Islamic law in captured towns.
“Here I am, alive. I will only die the day Allah takes my breath,” Shekau said in the 36-minute video, adding that his group was “running our… Islamic caliphate” and administering sharia punishments.
Nigeria’s military said last week that Shekau was dead and that a man who had been posing as the group’s leader in the videos had been shot dead after fighting with troops in the far northeast.
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The claim was debunked by several sources monitoring the insurgency in north east Nigeria. It was even further thrashed when the 7 seconds video on the Shekau look-alike went viral on the internet: the captured man who was later killed did not look like the man who normally taunted Nigeria’s leaders and their military in video clips.