Nigeria: Radical Muslim sect grows more dangerous

By the Associated Press | November 4, 2011 | 12:50 PM EDT

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — A radical Muslim sect in Nigeria is splintering into three factions and growing more dangerous, as it steps up its attacks.

The sect known locally as Boko Haram has killed more than 240 people this year in its campaign to enshrine strict Shariah law in Nigeria, a nation of more than 160 million divided between a predominantly Christian south and Muslim north.

The sect has killed government officials and planted bombs. It also claimed responsibility for the Aug. 26 suicide car bombing of the United Nations headquarters in Nigeria that killed 24 people and wounded 116 others.

Friday, the sect allegedly carried out a suicide bomb attack against a military base in its spiritual home of Maiduguri as three other explosives detonated across the city.