The Islamic insurgency in Northeastern Nigeria flared up again over the weekend and into Monday. In three separate attacks unknown gunmen caused numerous casualties. On Sunday night, gunmen attacked a village in the state of Kaduna, reportedly leaving around 34 dead. Earlier that day, gunmen also attacked a church, also in Kaduna state, killing one and injuring many. Finally, an attack on an army base in the Northwestern state of Sokoto came under attack allegedly from the Islamic State (ISWAP), killing 22 soldiers.

These attacks represent not only a disastrous loss of (mostly innocent) life, but also stands in sharp contrast with hopes of government and counter-intelligence hopes that the mass-surrenders of a few weeks ago had turned a page in the insurgency. To the contrary, the attacks both this week and last week have shown that the weakening of Boko Haram has not slowed the pace of radical Islamic attacks. It has instead emboldened ISWAP and the myriad of armed criminal groups on-the-ground to strike at civilian targets, with the apparent idea that attention has focused to rooting out Boko Haram. None of the attacks have been formally claimed yet, so it is possible some group outside the two big threats (BH and ISWAP) is responsible for the violence in Kaduna state, but once again we will not know unless an actor takes responsibility or the government releases a statement.