UN Workers Spend 3 Months With Boko Haram As Agencies Vow Not To Pay Ransoms




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Two kidnapped United Nations workers are yet to be released after three months the custody of Boko Haram terrorists.

This comes after UN vowed not to pay ransom for their or start a negotiation with the terrorists.

SaharaReporters learnt that the humanitarian workers have life insurance and the agencies would rather pay insurance claims to their families than save them Boko Haram through ransom negotiations.

A top source added that the Nigerian , which itself has several highly priced abductees with Boko Haram, has asked the agencies to secure the of their workers – although they are Nigerians.

of them is Garba Idris, a staff member of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, who was abducted on , January 2 along the Damaturu-Maiduguri Road, Borno .

The second humanitarian worker captivity is yet to be identified.

The insurgents had attacked some commuters near Matari village between Minok to Jakana road on the said day before picking Idris.

The terrorists had also ambushed vehicles conveying commuters near Matari village between Minok to Jakana highway, and the Boko Haram fighters held Idris, aka Alooma, a Senior Protection Assistant with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, during the attack.

A source said the terrorists, clad in military uniform, had placed a roadblock with three Hilux pickup trucks and motorcycles.

“Witnesses said while searching the , Idris attempted to throw away Identity card but of the insurgents sighted him. He was then asked to step down the vehicle along with two others. The rest were allowed to continue the journey.

“The two were later released on the ground that they are very poor and of no ”, the source had disclosed.

Unconfirmed reports stated that the terrorists also abducted scores of the on that journey.

Speaking with SaharaReporters on Monday, a top UN confirmed that two staff members had been with the Boko Haram insurgents but there is no payment of ransom and no negotiation, which are both in line with the rules of operation of the .

He said, “They (the Boko Haram) typically don’t aid workers without collecting ransom which only the can pay as aid agencies on principle don’t. So they make a spectacle of it by executing and releasing the video.

“So that Damaturu-Maiduguri Road had been closed to all UN staff since November when the situation escalated but the two aid workers abducted were on personal travels when armed fighters stopped their vehicles and identified them during search.

“The feels they are aid workers and the aid agencies should pay the ransom and not the . Recall that the International Committee of the Red Cross helped the to negotiate the Chibok girls’ release. But the government dropped the money.

“So when the ICRC staff members were abducted and the government was asked to step it, they told ICRC to their connection to free their staff. ICRC didn’t pay and the was killed.”

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