India’s Increasing Presence in Africa and Boko Haram

Boko Haram has been on an active campaign to create an Islamic state since 2009. Since then, 1.5 million people have been displaced, hundreds have been abducted and over 2,000 people were killed only in 2014. Now, Boko Haram controls many towns and village in north-east Nigeria, and has taken to launching attacks on Cameroon.  It also has control over some military bases, such as the one near the town of Monguno. Its missions have become more daring, with it having attacked the police and UN headquarters in Abuja.

It is evident that Boko Haram is a major threat, and international assistance is needed to curb their reign of terror. An African Coalition force including 3,500 soldiers from Benin, Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria was announced in November 2014. Recently, the African Union has backed a plan for deploying a 7,500-soldier strong West African Task Force. The UNSC has taken no steps other than to impose sanctions against Boko Haram and condemn their action. While the international community has been more than proactive in dealing with threats in the Middle East, Africa has been largely ignored. However, as recent global events would attest; it would be inadvisable for any country to intervene unilaterally. But, India must call for an international intervention to deal with this crisis.

India’s increasing presence in Africa has been a much talked about issue. In light of Boko Haram’s activities in Africa, do you think India should be proactive and spearhead an intervention? Why? Elaborate on the international measures being taken to combat the threat of Boko Haram.