ABUJA – The UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, has called for the release of Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram sect one year ago.
Ban, in a statement on the “One-Year Anniversary of the Abduction of Schoolgirls” on Tuesday, said Chibok schoolgirls must not be forgotten.
“One year ago, over 276 girls were abducted by Boko Haram from their school in Chibok, Borno State, in North-Eastern Nigeria.
“While some of the girls were fortunate to have escaped, the fate of many remains unknown.
“We must never forget the kidnapped Chibok girls, and I will not stop calling for their immediate release and their safe return to their families,” he said.
The UN scribe regretted that Boko Haram had intensified attacks on innocent people in Nigeria and neighbouring countries in the last one year.
According to him, hundreds have been displaced from their homes and deprived of the fundamental human rights.
He condemned the terrorist group’s atrocities, including abduction and use of children for suicide bombings.
“Over the past 12 months, Boko Haram intensified its brutal attacks on boys and girls in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.
“Hundreds of thousands of children have been displaced from their homes and deprived of their rights to live and grow up in safety, dignity and peace.
“Boko Haram’s killing, abduction and recruitment of children, including the use of girls as suicide bombers, are abhorrent”.
Ban said that Boko Haram’s attacks had violated humanitarian law.
“I also remain deeply concerned by the group’s repeated and cowardly attacks, targeting schools in grave violation of international humanitarian law.
“The children of North-Eastern Nigeria and neighbouring countries must be allowed to live in peace and enjoy their right to a safe education.”
He cautioned that the legitimate response to Boko Haram’s attacks must be fully consistent with international law and not create additional risks for the protection of children.
“On this day, I reaffirm my support to the governments and peoples of the region in the fight against Boko Haram.
“I stand in solidarity with the families of all abductees, especially children, their communities and society at large.” (NAN)
you may also like: