The aftermath of a bombing in Kaduna which Boko Haram is suspected of having carried out
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Need To Know: What is driving Nigeria's Boko Haram?

Northern Nigeria has been the scene of a cycle of violence, led by the Islamist group Boko Haram, whose name, when loosely translated from the local Hausa language, means "Western education is forbidden".

They are calling for strict Islamic governance in the country, and have carried out increasingly bloody attacks against anyone who they see as opposing them.

One such attack in the northern Nigerian city of Kano in January killed about 150 people.

The ongoing unrest is seen as a serious threat to Africa's most populous nation.

But how much support for their objectives does the group have, especially amongst those in the north who often feel marginalised and forgotten about by the rest of the country?

BBC Africa's Tomi Oladipo highlights the key issues surrounding Boko Haram.

  • 23 Apr 2012