Amnesty International Urges Nigerian Government To Investigate Military Air Strikes In Yobe, Rivers States

Global human rights’ group, Amnesty International, has called on the Nigerian government to commence an investigation into military airstrikes in Yobe and Rivers states. 

In a statement on Friday, Isa Sanusi, Media Manager, Amnesty International Nigeria, stated that the families of those killed in the strikes must be compensated. 

The statement reads, “Amnesty International is calling on the Nigerian authorities to conduct an independent and impartial investigation into the recent military airstrike that killed at least 9 people and injured 20 people on 15 September when Nigerian Air Force fighter jets targeted several villages in Yobe state, including Buwari, Bulabulin, Matari, Malari and Kajinjiri. 

“Similarly, on 26 August a wooden passenger boat ferrying passengers and their goods from Port Harcourt to Bonny in Rivers State was targeted by a military helicopter, injuring several passengers.”

Osai Ojigho, Director Amnesty International Nigeria, was quoted as saying, “Nigerian government must immediately conduct a full, transparent and impartial investigation into the horrific incidents in Yobe and River states.

“Amnesty International is calling for full reparations for the relatives of those killed in the strikes, as well as remedy for other victims in previous military air strikes – including compensation, restitution and rehabilitation. Nigerian military must abide by international law in future military operations and protect lives of civilians.” 

The group added that anyone suspected of criminal responsibility should be prosecuted in a fair trial.

It also urged the government to ensure that survivors and families of the victims should be kept informed of the progress of the investigation and be given full reparation. 

“Previous incident in the North East of Nigeria and Niger Delta region were met with deafening silence and outright denial by the military while devastated families suffer in silence,” the statement added.

SaharaReporters had reported how a military fighter jet targeting Boko Haram accidentally on Wednesday bombed Buwari community.

The community is located 20 kilometres away from Kannamma, the headquarters of Yunusari Local Government Area of the North-East state.

Villagers in the past have reported some civilian casualties in near-daily bombardments in North Eastern Nigeria.

Recently, a military jet that came to repel an attack by Boko Haram dropped a bomb that landed in a compound where civilians were holding a naming ceremony.

A fighter jet also on a mission against Boko Haram extremists in April, 2021 mistakenly bombed men of the Nigerian Army, killing over 20 officers.

The soldiers who were reinforced from Ngandu village were said to be on their way to Mainok, headquarters of the Kaga Local Government Area of Borno state which was under attack by militants from the Islamic State-backed faction of Boko Haram, the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), formerly known as Jamā’at Ahl as-Sunnah lid-Da’wah wa’l-Jihād.

Some of the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2014 and freed last year also said three of their classmates were killed by air force bombardments.

In June 2021, an offensive aerial bombardment the NAF Alpha jet carried out around Genu town in Niger State resulted in the killings of some wedding guests.

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