Northeast Nigeria’s Armed Conflict Is Far From Over, Says Humanitarian Coordinator

Source The United Nations



Media – Press conference by Matthias Schmale, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Nigeria on the humanitarian situation in Nigeria.

The United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for Nigeria, Matthias Schmale, said that more than 8 million people need assistance in the country.

Talking to journalists today (10 Nov), Schmale said that the situation in Northeast Nigeria is “far from over. We have a continued non-international armed conflict that is affecting a lot of people.”

On Nigeria itself, he said, “We need to recognize that with all the uncertainty and the troubles across the Sahel and West Africa, Nigeria remains a stable country, a democratic country, and we owe it to them to recognize that and to partner up with them.”

Answering a question, he said that Boko Haram “is weaker than it used to be” but that “their violence has become more unpredictable.”

He continued, “We are seeing rising numbers of civilians being killed and tortured because they do random attacks all over the place, which also means it’s become less safe for civilians, but also humanitarian.”

On the region, he said, “We remain worried because of also the instability in Niger that Islamic, you know, violent extremist groups are finding havens there and are preparing to spread whatever they are up to further into the continent. So right now, North Nigeria is, I think, relatively safe and protected from those influences as much as it can be, but the region itself is not, and for the UN, I think it’s fair to say the influence of violent extremist groups remains of grave concern.”

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