Military sources on Saturday confirmed the arrest of the leader of the Ansaru Islamic Sect, Khalid Albarnawi, who was described as the second in command to Abubakar Shekau in the hierarchy of the Boko Haram terrorists group.
A report by an online portal, The Cable, had quoted Ahmad Salkida, a journalist, known for his access to some of the leaders of the Boko Haram as having said that Albarnawi was arrested by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) in Lokoja, Kogi State and moved to Abuja on Friday.
The Ansaru leader, Albarnawi, who reportedly trained in the North African country of Algeria, is believed to highly be influential in the nation’s terror network.
He is regarded as the most influential member of Nigeria’s terror network with contacts to other Jihadi groups in North Africa and the Middle East. Salkida said Albarnawi is believed to have reconciled with the leader of Islamic State in West Africa (ISWAP), also known as Boko Haram.
Ansaru was formed as a splinter group of the Boko Haram in January 26, 2012 and it claimed responsibility for the November 2012 attack on the Special Anti Robbery Squad Headquarters, Abuja.