21 March 2018

Nigeria: Military Complicit in Kidnap of Nigeria Schoolgirls

Photo: The Guardian
Nigerian army.

Abuja — The Nigerian military reportedly ignored advance warnings before the abduction of more than 100 schoolgirls by the Boko Haram terror group last month.

Human rights groups reported the security forces failed to respond to distress calls that the Islamic militants were heading towards Dapchi, Yobe State where they later kidnapped the 110 students at the Government Girls Science and Technical College.

The armed raid had chilling echoes of the infamous Chibok girls' abductionof 2014.

Some 276 schoolgirls were kidnapped in Chibok, also in the northeastern Borno State.

Osai Ojigho, Amnesty International's Nigeria Director, said the Nigerian authorities must investigate the security lapses that allowed the abduction in Dapchi take place without any tangible attempt to prevent it.

"As an even greater priority, the government must use all lawful means at its disposal to ensure that these girls are rescued," Ojigho said.

Amnesty International said Nigerian authorities have failed in their duty to protect civilians, as in Chibok.

"Despite being repeatedly told that Boko Haram fighters were heading to Dapchi, it appears that the police and military did nothing to avert the abduction."

The kidnapping of the Dapchi girls on February 19 is the latest in a series of kidnappings by Boko Haram in a violent campaign to establish an Islamic state in Nigeria.

Authorities have assured parents of their rescue.

"We will ensure that whatever means to rescue these girls will be done," said Defence Minister Mansur Dan-Ali.

Police have deployed over 2 000 personnel to schools in the northeast.

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