Boko Haram Leader Pledges Allegiance to ISIS

Boko Haram has pledged official allegiance to ISIS, according to an audio statement released online Saturday, NBC News reported. In the audio, the Nigerian group's leader Abubakar Shekau appears to be addressing ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, and also calls on Muslims throughout the world to declare a similar loyalty. The message, posted via a Boko Haram Twitter account, was confirmed by Flashpoint Intelligence, a global security firm and NBC News consultant. The announcement comes after five bomb blasts rocked the Nigerian city of Maiduguri on Saturday, killing at least 54 people and wounding 143 others in Boko Haram's northeastern heartland.

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