Danger in Nigeria for Americans

Sunday, CNN reported that the US embassy in Nigeria released a statement to US citizens in the country that danger is imminent after a series of attacks left more than 100 people dead.

The warning states that attacks may take place at luxury hotels where foreigners frequent, since those seems to be one of the current sites of attack, along with police stations, mosques and churches.

Though there has not been an official confirmation of responsibility from any particular group, the group that has been thought to be behind the attacks of popular sites foreigners frequent is a radical Islamist sect Boko Haram, which means “western education is a sin.”

In the past the Islamist sect has stated that their goal is to establish a state based on Sharia, Islamic law, across Nigeria. The sect has become well known in the past couple of years because of sectarian violence in 2009.

The statement warned that American citizens should be prepared for more security checkpoints and road blocks throughout the city of Abuja.

The series of attacks took place Friday in a three-hour tear through the city of Damaturu, in Yobe state, leaving hundreds of people injured and over 100 people dead. The first sites of attack were police stations and a anti-terror office before the attacks moved to religious sites.

The same day the three hour attacks took place, three suicide bombers suspected to be part of Boko Haram targeted a military base in Maiduguri. The bombers tried, at separate military facilities, to enter into the military base but were not able to get past the security gate. The explosions from the bombs damaged the roofs and walls of the base. Nigerian soldiers were injured.

The following evening another suicide bomber attacked Maiduguri, and Boko Haram is suspected to be behind all the attacks for the past weekend. With the series of attacks taking place over the weekend, it begs the question of whether these attacks are the stepping stones for something bigger such as a possible organized take-over or civil war in the near future.