The Huffington Post quotes Africa Center Director J. Peter Pham on the global importance of Nigeria’s economy and the international implications of Boko Haram’s violence:
“Nigeria is Africa’s most populous country, its largest economy. It’s the motor of a continent that we acknowledge is increasingly important strategically and economically for the world,” said J. Peter Pham, director of the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center. “And it’s held hostage by a murderous gang of violent extremists, who are growing increasingly more and more virulent.”
The group currently has significant portions of the Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states under siege — an area Pham estimates to be slightly smaller than the state of West Virginia.