Chadian President, Idriss Deby, has announced to the media that Boko Haram has a new leader named Mahmat Daoud, who is willing to negotiate with Nigeria.

President Deby of Chad

President Deby was addressing reporters in N’Djamena on the 55th anniversary celebration of Chad’s independence from France when he declared that Boko Haram has been “decapitated.” He said that the terrorist group has been scattered in small groups across northeastern Nigeria.

“There is someone apparently called Mahamat Daoud who is said to have replaced Abubakar Shekau and he wants to negotiate with the Nigerian government,” Deby said at the ceremony.

Abubakar Shekau took over as the group's leader after the its founder, Muhammad Yusuf, died while in Nigerian police custody in July 2009.

Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria have all pledged troops towards fighting the Boko Haram insurgency.

President Deby also claimed that by the end of the year the war against Boko Haram will be over.

In March, President Deby told reporters during a joint press conference with Niger’s head of state that his military knows the whereabouts of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, and that it was in the “best interests” of the terrorist leader to surrender.

Although he said the multinational force was winning the war, the challenge at hand is to "avoid terrorist acts and that's why we must organise at the regional level to prevent bomb-making materials and other explosives entering our countries."

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