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Published: Saturday May 17, 2014 MYT 11:16:43 PM
Updated: Saturday May 17, 2014 MYT 11:18:14 PM

Boko Haram is West Africa's Al-Qaeda, says Nigerian President

PARIS (Reuters) - Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram, which has kidnapped more than 200 schoolgirls, is no longer a local threat but has become West Africa's Al-Qaeda, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said on Saturday.

"Boko Haram is no longer a local terrorist group, it is operating clearly as an Al-Qaeda operation, it is an Al-Qaeda of West Africa," Jonathan told a news conference in Paris following a meeting of West African leaders on the issue.

"We have shown our commitment for a regional approach. Without West African countries coming together we will not be able to crush these terrorists," Jonathan said.

(Reporting by John Irish; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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