Thursday, 14 April 2016

Chibok Girls Abduction Increases Child Suicide Attacks In Nigeria, Africa—UNICEF

UNICEF has said that child’s suicide attacks in Nigeria and neighbouring countries rose sharply from four in 2014 to 44 in 2015 as the country marks the second anniversary of the abduction of over 200 schoolgirls in Chibok, Borno State.

The UNICEF report entitled Beyond Chibok shows that between January 2014 and February 2016, Cameroon recorded 21 Boko Haram-induced suicide attacks involving children, followed by Nigeria, 17, and Chad, two.

It added that more than 75 percent of the children were girls, even as it assesses the impact conflict has had on children in countries affected by Boko Haram.

The report notes that nearly 1.3 million children have been displaced, about 1,800 schools closed— damaged, looted, burned down or used as shelter by displaced people, while over 5,000 children were reported unaccompanied/separated from their parents.

In the statement, UNICEF Regional Director for West and Central Africa, Manuel Fontaine, said: “Let us be clear: these children are victims, not perpetrators. Deceiving children and forcing them to carry out deadly acts has been one of the most horrific aspects of the violence in Nigeria and in neighbouring countries.”

He noted that over the past two years, nearly one in five suicide bombers was a child and three quarters of them were girls.

Hear him: “Last year, children were used in one out of two attacks in Cameroon, one out of eight in Chad, and one out of seven in Nigeria…in 2015 for the first time, ‘suicide’ bombing attacks in general spread beyond Nigeria’s borders and the frequency of all suicide bombings increased from 32 in 2014 to 151 last year. In 2015, 89 of these attacks were carried out in Nigeria, 39 in Cameroon, 16 in Chad and seven in Niger.

Fontaine noted that the response to the crisis remains severely underfunded. “This year, only 11 percent of the US$97 million needed for UNICEF’s humanitarian response has been received and UNICEF is calling for increased commitment from donors to support affected children and women. About one million Nigerian children are missing out on education as Boko Haram has destroyed about 900 schools and killed over 600 teachers, accor-ding to Human Rights Watch.



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