The UK Promises Military Assistance To Nigeria To Fight Boko Haram

The United Kingdom, UK, has promised to increase its military and educational aid to Nigeria in order to tackle Boko Haram and rescue Nigerian schoolgirls abducted by the insurgents on 14 April, 2014.

This statement was made on Thursday by UK’s Foreign Secretary, William Hague while speaking at the global summit to end sexual violence against women.

He said Nigeria’s army would receive extra training, especially in counter-insurgency tactics, while a million more children would be given schooling.

This is the latest promise of Western help since Boko Haram abducted no fewer than 276 girls inside Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State, northeastern Nigeria in April.

Since then the Islamist group has stepped up its attacks across Nigeria.


* Nigerian soldiers

Boko Haram has waged an increasingly bloody insurgency since 2009 in an attempt to create an Islamic state in Nigeria.

Reports say more than four thousands of people have died in their attacks and the subsequent security crackdown.

The abduction of the schoolgirls has focused attention on the fight against Boko Haram.

Some analysts are of the opinion that promise of extra training in counter-insurgency will be welcomed by the Nigerian authorities but it will take some time for this to have any impact on the ground.

It is their belief that there is no quick fix to this conflict that has brewed and boiled for years now.

The US is already giving similar training. New equipment is also needed, as well as more troops in the north-east, where the attacks are relentless.

Mr Hague stressed that human rights must be respected in the operation against the militant group.

Human rights groups have accused Nigeria’s army of killing hundreds of civilians in crackdowns following Boko Haram attacks.


* UK’s Foreign Secretary, William Hague

The British foreign secretary also insisted that the extra aid must be spent effectively considering allegation of corruption in the military.

He said the extra assistance would be provided in conjunction with France and the US, and that Nigeria, Chad, Benin, Niger, Cameroon had confirmed they would put into operation a regional intelligence fusion unit – to “tighten the net” around Boko Haram.


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