On March 3, Boko Haram published a video showing the beheading of two spies. It was the first time Boko Haram sent out such a video. Ashagrie, a persecution analyst for Open Doors' World Watch List Research team, comments: "The act indicates that Boko Haram might be trying to incorporate itself into Islamic State. According to reports, Islamic State supporters are already calling Boko Haram the 'Islamic State of Africa.'"
The video was posted online and seemed to have borrowed certain elements from productions of beheadings by Islamic State.
Ashagrie notes: "Although the religious affiliation of the two men was not mentioned, it is very likely that they were either Christians or Muslims not following Boko Haram's instructions. A chilling reminder of Boko Haram's stance on them can be what Boko Haram's leader stated last year referring to the 200 kidnapped school girls from Chibok: 'Our hostages are Christians or corrupted Muslims who follow the Christian way.' In any case, Boko Haram's increasing affiliation with Islamic State combined with the fact that it is expanding its reach beyond Nigeria, is an enormous threat for Christians in the region. They might be facing a life of extreme pressure and captivity resembling the lives of Christians in the IS-controlled areas in Iraq and Syria."