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Boko Haram Has Killed Over 1,433 Children In Nigeria-UN



Boko Haram

A report by the United Nation has revealed that at least 1,433 have been killed in Nigeria by Boko Haram.

This was disclosed in the second country report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict in Nigeria.

Released on Saturday, July 25, 2020, the report described 5,741 grave violations against children between January 2017 and December 2019 in Nigeria.

The report also revealed the recruitment and use of children accounted for the greatest number of verified violations; with a total of 3,601 boys and girls affected.

Boko Haram was responsible for the recruitment and use of 1,385 children, mainly through abduction. These were used in direct hostilities and in a variety of support roles including as sexual slaves.

The report says one particular and especially despicable practice of Boko Haram was to use children, mainly girls; as carriers of personnel-borne improvised explosive devices, also known as “human bombs.”

Also, more than 2,000 violations were cases of recruitment and use of children by the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) before September 2017; when the group signed an Action Plan with the United Nations to end and prevent the violation. The UN was able to verify these cases as the CJTF granted them access to their military barracks; in the framework of the Action Plan.

Meanwhile, 1,433 child casualties were verified, the vast majority attributed to Boko Haram. Also, the leading cause of child casualties remained suicide attacks. In addition, 64 incidents of sexual violence affecting 204 children were verified. As for all other situations on the children and armed conflict agenda; the violation is considered to be vastly under-reported. This was attributed to fear of stigma, retaliation; lack of accountability for perpetrators and lack of resources for survivors.

Virginia Gamba, the United Nations Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, described the situation as one of grave concern.

“The children of Nigeria and neighboring countries continued to endure horrendous violations by Boko Haram,” she said in a statement; adding that the group’s expansion across the Lake Chad Basin region is “a serious concern” for Secretary-General António Guterres.

“Children formerly associated should not be further penalized through detention… I call on the Government of Nigeria to expedite the release of children from detention and prioritize their reintegration into society,” she said.

“I also urge the Government to review and adopt the protocol for the handover of children associated with armed groups to civilian child protection actors.”

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