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Boko Haram: There is a limit to assistance we can offer Nigeria – Britain


The British government through its Minister for State, Foreign and Commonwealth, Joyce Anelay has stated that there is a limit to the assistance it can offer Nigeria against its fight with terrorism.

This is due to the recent attacks by the insurgents (Boko Haram) right after the Federal Government of Nigeria announced a cease fire deal with the rebels.

The Minister while fielding questions from the House of Lords on Thursday said the British Government was cautious on what is said about the boko haram insurgency in Nigeria. She said; “Nigeria faces a serious threat from Boko Haram. We believe that more than 3,000 people have been killed by Boko Haram this year and more than 1.5 million people have been displaced. We are aware of reports that Nigerian authorities have agreed to a ceasefire with Boko Haram and are in ongoing negotiations.

“We are also aware of reports of Boko Haram attacks since the ceasefire announcement. We monitor events closely. Boko Haram deliberately targets the weak and vulnerable, causing suffering in communities of differing faiths and ethnicities. It has no regard for human life. We are in continual discussion with the Nigerian authorities to press exactly as the noble Baroness says, and we give as much support as we can in intelligence matters.”

Another member of parliament, Caroline Cox, who had visited the north eastern part of Nigeria where the boko haram insurgency is worst felt told the British Government to pressure the Nigerian Government to do more than it is doing in quelling down the insurgency. Cox said: “I thank the minister for that sympathetic reply. Is she aware that I have visited areas afflicted by Boko Haram and found that the scale of suffering to which she refers massively exceeds that reported by the media?

“Despite reports of a peace agreement with Boko Haram, to which the Minister refers, local people do not believe that the federal and state authorities are sufficiently willing or able to stop Boko Haram’s reign of terror. Therefore, will Her Majesty’s government make the strongest possible representation to the government of Nigeria to do much more to implement effective policies to protect all its citizens from this escalating terrorism?”

Joyce Analey replied by saying the war is for the Nigerian Government, Britain would give all the support she can. She said the country already donated a Sentinel and Tornado GR4 aircraft to assist in the fight against boko haram. “We are therefore most cautious in what we say in these matters. What I will say is that it is for the Nigerian authorities to resolve the matter. We will give the strongest support we can.”

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