Tragedy as Nigerian Army Kills Hundreds of IDPs Instead of Terrorists
Tragedy struck this morning when a fighter jet manned by the Nigerian Air force misfired during an operation, striking refugees at a camp for the internally displaced as well as aid workers with the International Committee of the Red Cross.
As at press time, the Federal government is yet to provide any official death toll, however, one volunteer organization reported that at least 52 people were killed at the IDP camp in Rann, Borno state.
The Nigerian Army said the failed operation was targeting a group of Boko Haram terrorists.
An army commander, Maj. Gen. Lucky Irabor, said in a news conference in Maiduguri that two soldiers also lost their lives during the operation.
“There are casualties and wounded but the for the actual numbers, “I am yet to get the numbers of casualties of civilians were killed.”
Doctors Without Borders condemned what it called a “large-scale attack on vulnerable people.” It said 52 people were killed and 120 more were wounded.
The humanitarian group, which has teams in the area, called the incident “shocking and unacceptable.”
Doctors Without Borders’ director of operations Jean-Clément Cabrol, said, “The safety of civilians must be respected. We are urgently calling on all parties to ensure the facilitation of medical evacuations by air or road for survivors who are in need of emergency care,”
A statement from President Muhammadu Buhari reads:
“President (Muhammadu) Buhari, condoles with families of the dead, wishes the wounded divine succor, leading to full recovery, and sympathizes with the Borno State government,”
Doctors Without Borders teams are providing first aid to the wounded at their facility in Rann, the group said. They’re also preparing to treat patients evacuated from the refugee camp.
Reports say at least six Nigerian Red Cross staffers had been killed and 13 others wounded.
Borno state holds the largest number of internally displaced persons with roughly 1.8 million people displaced by conflict, 92% of them are housed in camps in Borno, Adamaw and Yobe state.