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UN envoy discloses terrorism refugee figures

16 December 2014, 07:29

Abuja - The United Nations Office for West Africa (UNOWA) said the Boko Haram insurgency has displaced over 700 000 Nigerians.

The Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN for West Africa, Mohammed Ibn Chambas, disclosed this at the 46th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government (HOSG).

Chambas put the number of refugees and returnees in Chad, Cameroon, and Niger at about 142 000 people.

“The Boko Haram insurgency continues to create mayhem as innocent civilian populations are being killed and entire communities are living under very challenging security situations. The regional dimension of this violent extremism is more than ever visible," Chambas said.

Efforts need to be stepped up to globally and comprehensively combat the insurgency, he said.

Also read: UN pledges support to Nigeria's fight against terrorism

He called on all parties concerned to intensify efforts at ensuring the objectives of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were met.

He added that the issue of youth unemployment needs to be urgently addressed and the attainment of the objectives of the MDGs which has been shadowed by the many security challenges faced, not only on the African continent but the entire world, needs to be refocused.

Chambas meanwhile commended ECOWAS for restoring political stability in Burkina Faso. 

“United Nations will remain actively engaged jointly with ECOWAS to prepare for transparent, free, and fair elections that will mark the end of the transition period in 2015. Events in Burkina Faso should be viewed as a call for improved governance and especially participative democracy which allows the driving force in our region”.

He called for concerted efforts at ensuring violent-free elections in member-states preparing to hold elections in 2015 and coordinated efforts at stopping the spread of the Ebola virus and reiterated the UN’s continued support in the implementation of developed mechanisms.


- CAJ News


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