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April 24, 2014

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Islamic extremist leader threatens Nigerian oil

Updated Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014 | 2:25 a.m.

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — The leader of Nigeria's Islamic uprising is threatening to attack oil interests more than a thousand miles (kilometers) from the northeastern base where his fighters are accused of killing more than 250 civilians this month.

In a new video message, Abubakar Shekau also warns leading Nigerian Muslim politicians and religious and traditional leaders that his fighters will target them for pursuing democracy and Western-style education.

He says his struggle to transform Africa's biggest oil producer into an Islamic state is only just beginning. He says he will destroy oil refineries "in coming days."

The warnings come the week Nigeria's military has defended itself against charges by regional leaders that Shekau's fighters are better armed and motivated.

The video was obtained Thursday by the AP through channels used for previous communications.