As a resolution, this has no legal power. The President doesn’t have to sign it. The Senate doesn’t even have to vote on it. It’s really just kind of an opinion.
It does have bipartisan support — well, eight Democrats and Will Hurd (R-TX). As a former undercover CIA agent, he knows a thing or two about security.
Boko Haram is a Nigerian paramilitary group that has been active since the early 2000s, but has become more of a threat in the last five years. During that time, an estimated 10,000 people have been killed in clashes between the group and Nigerian forces in the country’s Northeastern region. The conflict has displaced another 1.5 million.
In 2014, Boko Haram kidnapped 270 girls from a boarding school in Chibok, in Northeastern Nigeria. The Nigerian government still doesn't know where they are. That same year, the group was linked to a bombing at a mall in the national capital of Abuja that killed 21 people.
On January 3, 2015, a group of Boko Haram fighters attacked the town of Baga. According to the resolution, most of the people killed in the attack were women, children and the elderly.
Since the Baga attack, however, Nigeria has made progress against the group. In February, the Nigerian government took back Baga, and a Nigerian general told Reuters that “There are only mopping up exercises left to do.” In an interview with the BBC on March 20, 2015, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said that he thought government forces could defeat the group in a month.
Sponsoring Rep. Robin Kelly (D-IL) Press Release
Al Jazeera (Context)
ENews Park Forest
Summary by James Helmsworth
(Photo Credit: Flickr user Diario Critico Venezuela)