It started with simultaeneous attacks on the palaces of Emirs and Obas in the North West and South West of Nigeria. Explosions and heavy gunfire in Ife, Sokoto, Kano, Oyo, Katsina, Ibadan, Zaria, Eko, Kebbi, Akure, Bida and Ilesha.
Hundreds were killed and a previously unknown group, The Movement for the Emancipation of Greater Biafra claims responsibility for what it describes to be justified retaliation at the valued symbols of the "Nigerian occupiers of Greater Biafra". This region is described in the handout sent to media organisations world-wide as consisting not only of the Igbo heartland, but also the entirity of the Niger Delta area east of the River Niger. The group also lays claim, on behalf of Greater Biafra, to all territorial waters and minerals in the Bight Of Biafra.
MEND are quick to denounce both the actions and the claims of representation made by this new group and, previously known Igbo organisations like MASSOB and Ohaneze also express their revulsion at the barbaric acts and the claims of representation made by this new group. However, in the chaotic conditions that prevail after the terrorist strikes, little attention is paid to the disclaimers.
Due to the simmering vindictiveness that is finally given justification in the minds of all bigots, very little credence is given to the disclaimers.
The President of the Federal Republic calls for calm; he pleads for a reduction in the vehemence of the accusatory remarks that are being made by various groups in the country. He also convenes an emergency meeting of all security chiefs.
While they deliberate, a plane full of hajj pilgrims from Kwara is blown up over Saudi Arabian airspace. There are no survivors and the new Movement again claims responsibility. It describes this new strike as being a demonstration to the "Nigerian occupiers" that they are safe nowhere. It describes all who claim (and defend) Nigerian citizenship as being collaborators (and partners in crime) with those who have "stolen the patrimony of the Greater Biafran people."
All known members of MASSOB and Ohaneze are placed in detention by the Federal government. The Nigerian Airforce and the Navy bombard the areas known to be inhabited by MEND and its sympathisers. Intelligence obtained by USA spy satellites are of great help in this operation. Civilian casualties are unknown as the whole area is quarantined.
Massive and deadly explosions rock Maiduguri, Ado Ekiti, Lokoja, Benin City, Okene and Ondo town. Mass riots break out in major cities all over Nigeria and, over the two weeks that follow the blowing up of Flight XG420 over Saudi airspace, tens of thousands perish at the hands of their fellow citizens. There is little structure to the organisation of the killings and maimings, some groups form to attack the members of ethnically different groups and, others form to attack non co-religonists. Pro and anti government forces in all States and Local government areas also form well-armed militia and embark on "sanitation exercises".
A State of Emergency is declared but, the acts of terrorism escalate as the natural competitiveness of Nigerians cause the disparate armed groups to seek outdoing each other in the commision of atrocities.
Then, prominent Nigerians (some already resident in the West and others newly departed from Nigeria) form articulate diaspora organisations and, use these well-funded platforms to call on the civilized world to intervene on "humanitarian grounds" before the fire in Nigeria consumed not only a sizeable portion of the population, but also spread into other areas of the West Africa region. They remind the concerned citizens of the Developed World that the wars that had created miseries in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Cote D'Ivoire had also started as localised fires.
The groups of prominent Nigerian diaporans called on the UN and the AU to intervene. Emergency sessions of both august bodies were called and in the course of these, Ghana, Kenya, Libya, Egypt and Britain volunteer their forces to serve as peace-keepers (if required).