The Global Terrorism Index (GTI) has ranked the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as the 10th deadliest terror groups in the world, even as the impact of terrorism has continued to decline in Nigeria.
The GTI report which is produced by the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP), said though Sub-Saharan Africa recorded the largest increase in terrorism deaths, the “impact of terrorism continues to decline in Nigeria”.
IPOB was followed by Al-Shabaab, ISK and Jamaat Nusrat Al-Islam wal Muslimeen (JNIM). IS, Alshabab, ISK and JNIM have remained the deadliest terror group globally for the eighth consecutive year, recording the most attacks and deaths in the world. Syria is in the fifth position, while Pakistan is sixth, and Iraq, seventh.
Afghanistan, for the fourth consecutive year, is the country most impacted by terrorism, followed by three African countries – Burkina Faso (second position), Somalia (third) and Mali (fourth).
In the chart report IS killed 1,045 in 410 attacks with 644 injured. Alshabab killed 784 in 315 attacks with 1,016 injured. Islamic State – Khorasan Province (ISK) killed 498 in 141 attacks with 832 injured. Jamaat Nusrat Al-lslam wal Muslimeen (JNIM) killed 279 in 77 attacks with 215 injured. Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) killed 233 in 30 attacks with 113 injured.
“The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), designated as a terrorist group by the Nigerian government in 2017, recorded their deadliest year in 2022. They were responsible for 40 attacks and 57 deaths in 2022, an increase from 26 attacks and 34 deaths the year prior,” the report said.
IPOB is leading the agitation for the independent state of Biafra, which it wants carved out of the Igbo speaking south-east region and some parts of South-south Nigeria.
Last year’s GTI report attributed the increase in attacks on police and other security agencies in Nigeria to clashes between law enforcement and IPOB.
“Law enforcement, including police and prison officers overtook both military and civilians as the most targeted group of 2021. Attacks against police and prisons increased substantially from one recorded attack in 2020 to 75 in 2021, accounting for over a third of all attacks in Nigeria in 2021.
“This was largely driven by an increase in clashes between law enforcement and separatist groups, such as the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).”
The IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu has been in detention in Abuja, as a result of spearheading the agitation for secession and accused of terrorism.
Meanwhile, the report said Nigeria is now in the eighth position globally, among the countries that have been hard hit by terrorism in 2022. Nigeria had occupied the sixth position in last year’s report and was in the third position for more than three years before last year.