Nigeria drafts in foreign mercenaries to take on Boko Haram

March 12, 2015 12:11 PM

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Nigeria drafts in foreign mercenaries to take on Boko Haram

JOHANNESBURG/DAKAR (Reuters) - Nigeria has brought in hundreds of mercenaries from South Africa and the former Soviet Union to give its offensive against Boko Haram a shot in the arm before a March 28 election, according to regional security, defense and diplomatic sources.

Rumors about the use of foreign "soldiers of fortune" against the Islamist militant group gained substance this month when pictures surfaced on Twitter showing armored vehicles rumbling along a street in what was said to be Maiduguri, the regional capital of Nigeria's Boko Haram-hit northeast.

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