Amnesty International, a global human rights movement, has chronicled how some African countries, including Nigeria, have failed in protecting citizens from war crimes and human rights violations.
This was contained in its 2019 report which was sent to Journalists on Tuesday.
In its regional overview, the rights movement stated that many countries, as well as international peacekeepers, have failed in their obligation to protect civilians from war crimes and other serious human rights violations committed by armed groups including killings, torture, abductions and mass displacements.
“In eastern DRC, local police and nearby UN peacekeepers stayed in their camps while armed groups killed at least 70 civilians in Beni during November. In Nigeria, security forces failed to protect civilians in the northeast as Boko Haram carried out over 30 attacks resulting in at least 378 civilian deaths and the displacement of thousands of people.”
According to Amnesty International (AI), residents of some attacked towns and villages reported that Nigerian security forces had withdrawn their protection shortly before the attacks.
“In Cameroon’s Far north region, civilians protested against the lack of state protection and their feeling of abandonment amidst Boko Haram’s surge in attacks during which at least 275 people were killed and others mutilated or kidnapped,” it added.
Of the 2.3 million people displaced in Nigeria by the Boko Haram conflict since May 2013, at least 250,000 have left Nigeria and fled into Cameroon, Chad or Niger.
Boko Haram killed over 6,600 in 2014, AI said. The group has carried out mass abductions including the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls from Chibok in April 2014.
In 2014, the militants gained control of the territory in and around their home state of Borno.
On March 7, 2015, Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau, pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, rebranding as Islamic State in West Africa. The terror group has since split into different factions.
President Muhammadu Buhari and other top government officials had on several occasions announced that the government has ‘technically’ defeated the terrorists although a lot of fatal attacks are still being carried out by the insurgent group.
How Nigeria has fared
In its review of human rights violation in Nigeria, AI stated that the attacks by Boko Haram had resulted in hundreds of deaths, occasioned by security forces’ failure to protect civilians.
“Boko Haram continued to carry out attacks, abductions and killings of civilians in the Northeast. The armed group carried out at least 31 attacks that resulted in at least 378 civilian.”