Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.

 

US concerned about abuses by Nigerian forces

17 November 2012, 08:27

Lagos - The United States is seriously concerned about abuses committed by Nigerian security forces that are fuelling support for the Islamist insurgency in the north, the U.S. assistant secretary for democracy and human rights said on Friday.

Addressing journalists in the commercial hub of Lagos, Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labour Michael Posner urged Nigerian forces to be disciplined in their use of force and abstain from violence against civilians.

His remarks added to several calls for Nigeria's security forces to change their approach to the insurgency, which critics say is driving angry youths into the arms of Boko Haram and encouraging the northern population to shelter them.

"We are ... seriously concerned about abuses by members of the Nigerian security forces in combating Boko Haram's extremist violence," Posner said after talks with Nigerian officials. "We have received numerous reports of mass arrests, extra-judicial killings, torture and prolonged detention without due process."

There was no immediate comment from Nigerian security forces, but they have denied such accusations repeatedly.

Posner's comments came two weeks after Amnesty International said abuses were worsening the insurgency they were meant to crush.

"Many Nigerians believe that the excessive use of force by security forces ... has alienated local populations and fuelled support for Boko Haram," Posner said, echoing that view.

Boko Haram says it wants to create an Islamic state in Nigeria. Its fighters have killed hundreds in bomb and gun attacks in an uprising that began in 2009, and it has replaced militancy in the oil-rich Niger Delta as Nigeria's top security threat.

U.S. officials see their relationship with Africa's top energy producer as strategic, particularly because its light, sweet crude is ideal for refining into gasoline.

Boko Haram's influence has been greatly boosted by a feeling of helplessness in the dry, impoverished north, as political and economic power has gradually shifted to the rival, oil-rich south over the past decade.

Drawing on its own mixed experiences of tackling Islamist insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States has urged Nigeria use development to win over hearts and minds.

"Many of those most affected by the Boko Haram violence in northern states seek increased economic opportunity ... and more meaningful political engagement in shaping their own destiny," Posner said. "The ... government's ability to meet these ... aspirations will be critical to the country's future stability."

President Goodluck Jonathan has been accused of treating the conflict as a security problem that can be solved with force alone, although he has pledged more jobs for deprived areas.

Posner acknowledged that Boko Haram needed to be fought militarily, but urged the government to make "political and economic inclusion" part of its strategy.

- Reuters

NEXT ON NEWS24 NIGERIAX

Student arraigned over alleged rape

16 September 2014, 13:18

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Abubakar Jamiu
Jonathan cannot bring an end to t...

As a president who is keen and on the verge to savage this country should have ordered the immediate arrest of these heartless fellows and take them to ICC. Read more...

Submitted by
DSAGE
World Day for stupid questions

The majority of the people do not have sound knowledge of things that pertain to God and religion.  Read more...

Submitted by
Adigwe Emmanuel C
Wole Soyinka and his role in the ...

Wole Soyinka has achieved quite a lot it is no wonder he is loved and admired by many and that he received a cornucopia of compliments from all and sundry during his 80th birthday celebration. Read more...

Submitted by
DSAGE
God and Jesus of wickedness in wi...

I have always wondered why people are still everywhere venerating in pretense, make believe and hypocrisy. Read more...

Submitted by
DSAGE
Stupid question from a stupid ric...

The religious maniacs, bigots and sheepish congregation are always there with messages concerning the rich man and Jesus. Read more...

Submitted by
DSAGE
Supernatural force for progress i...

Truth of the matter is that everybody has eyes but the stagnation is not seen by everybody. Read more...