On 3 August, the Islamic State announced Abu Musab al-Barnawi, reported son of Boko Haram founder Muhammad Yusuf, as the new leader of the movement. Despite this, long-time leader Abubakar Shekau maintains his claim to the top position.
This competition has exposed a number of fissures within Boko Haram, including dissent over the killing of Muslim civilians and the loss of territory since its pledge to the Islamic State in March 2015.
It also comes as national forces in the region make significant but unsteady gains against the movement.
This View on Africa will be presented by Omar S Mahmood, a Researcher in the Conflict Prevention and Risk Analysis division. He will discuss the latest fractures and the implications for the battle against Islamic militancy in the Lake Chad Basin.
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