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Terror Touches Nigeria, China, Norway


Norwegian and Chinese hostages were killed by Islamic State this week as part of the spread of terrorism around the globe. (AP)

Norwegian and Chinese hostages were killed by Islamic State this week as part of the spread of terrorism around the globe. (AP)


The terrorist attack on Paris last week is getting daily attention, but terror struck elsewhere this week.

Boko Haram terrorists attacked the Nigerian cities of Kano and Yola this week. Nigerian officials said the attacks killed dozens and injured many others.

Boko Haram leaders said they are working with Islamic State militants.

In addition to 129 people killed in Paris last week, Islamic State killed two captives -- one from China and one from Norway -- this week.

Fan Jinghui, a former advertising executive, is believed to be the first Chinese captive killed by the terrorist group. And Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg said it appeared a man identified as Ole Johan Grimsgaard-Ofstad had also been killed.

The day before the Paris attacks, two suicide bombers killed 43 people and injured 239 people in the Lebanese capital of Beirut. The Paris attacks killed 129 people and injured at least 300. Islamic State took credit for both attacks.

On Thursday, French officials said they killed Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the alleged leader of last Friday’s attack. Police said he was identified by fingerprints.

Some security experts say they are troubled that Abaaoud had been able to travel easily to France. Abaaoud had been at the top of Europe’s most-wanted terrorists list.

Ronald Noble, the former secretary general of Interpol, said the terrorist attacks on Paris show the need to toughen border controls. Interpol is an international police organization representing 190 nations.

Noble said people like Abaaoud can travel through 26 European nations without passport checks or border controls.

This amounts to a “passport-free zone for terrorists to execute attacks on the continent and make their escape,” Noble wrote in Thursday’s New York Times.

In the United States, the House of Representatives approved legislation Thursday to block some 10,000 Syrian refugees from entering the U.S.

The legislation would delay the refugees from entering the U.S. until better background checks can be developed.

Republican sponsors say they worry about terrorists getting into the United States through the Syrian refugee admission program.

Said House Speaker Paul Ryan: “We are a compassionate nation. We always have been, and we always will be. But we also must remember that our first priority is to protect the American people.”

Democratic Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee said many refugees, particularly children, lack paperwork to enter the United States under the Republican bill.

There were other developments, as well.

In Turkey, some fans watching a soccer match Wednesday booed and chanted “Allahu Akbar,” or “God is Great.” Those chants happened during a moment of silence for the 129 killed in Paris.

This is troubling, said Semih Idiz, a political columnist for a Turkish newspaper.

“We do know there are people who actively support ISIS,” he said. “We do know that there are large numbers of people who are actively anti-Western, or anything Western or Christian.”

But Idiz said those views are in the minority in Turkey and certainly “not representative of the country.”

The French military said Thursday it destroyed 35 Islamic State targets since the terrorist attacks in Paris on November 13.

Also, Belgium Prime Minister Charles Michel announced a new package of anti-terrorism measures. He wants $427 million to boost the fight against terrorists.

In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio urged residents to ignore an Islamic State video threatening an attack on the city. He said there is “no credible and specific threat against New York City.”

Despite all the gloom, many people raised glasses of wine Thursday to mark “Beaujolais Day” in France. It is when the latest batch of Beaujolais Nouveau, a type of wine, is released at bars and restaurants.

President Francois Hollande said that France is at war with the Islamic State. But he said it is important for the French people to resume normal lives. “What would our country be without its cafes?” he said.

I'm Caty Weaver.

Zlatica Hoke, Dorian Jones, Mary Alice Salinas and Bill Ide reported on this story for VOANews.com. Bruce Alpert adapted this story for Learning English. Kathleen Struck was the editor.

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Words in This Story

dozens -- n. groups of 12 things or people

allegedadj. accused of having done something wrong or illegal but not yet proven guilty

fingerprintsn. the mark that is made by pressing the tip of a finger on a surface

admission – n. the act of admitting or allowing something

priority adj. something that is more important than other things

compassionate – adj. a feeling of wanting to help someone who is sick, hungry, in trouble

columnist – n. a person who writes a newspaper or magazine column

gloom – n. partial or total darkness

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