AFRICA/NIGERIA - An anti Boko Haram civilian militia worries residents of Maiduguri
Abuja (Agenzia Fides) - The local population is concerned about the presence of a civilian militia that operates alongside military personnel engaged in security operations in Maiduguri, capital of Borno State, one of three states in the north-east of Nigeria in which the federal government has imposed a state of emergency to counter the jihadist Boko Haram sect (see Fides 15/05/2013).
The military operations are carried out by the Joint Task Force (JTF), a special unit made up of the best elements of the Nigerian military. The civilian militia that supports it has been nicknamed "civilian JTF" and is made up of young people who operate checkpoints along the main streets of Maiduguri.
These operations are seen by local people as a potential threat to the fragile peace that seems to have come back after last week’s violence, which caused 30 victims, a series of coordinated attacks committed by Boko Haram in response to the arrest of some of its members on behalf of the civilian militia.
According to testimonies gathered by the Nigerian Tribune newspaper, residents of Maiduguri complain that the civil task force launched a "witch hunt" against people suspected of being linked to Boko Haram, implying the possibility of "do-it-yourself" abuse and justice.
The presence of a civilian militia is therefore likely to increase tension in an area where due to the military operations and reprisals of Boko Haram, about 3 thousand people have been forced to seek refuge in neighboring Countries, Niger and Cameroon. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 24/06/2013)
- 2015-01-26 - The Bishop of Maiduguri: "Boko Haram could conquer the entire north-east before the end of the election"
- 2015-01-23 - The Bishops: "too many politicians resort to slander and incite violence" during the election campaign
- 2015-01-16 - Malnutrition, trauma, violence: urgent medical assistance to the survivors of the attack committed by Boko Haram
- 2015-01-12 - "Future hope for a major demonstration to take place just like the one in Paris to say no to Boko Haram" proposes Mgr. Kaigama
- 2015-01-09 - New violence committed by Boko Haram: perhaps 2,000 dead, several churches burned
- 2015-01-08 - Boko Haram is now a regional problem
- 2014-12-29 - The IDPs in Maiduguri celebrate Christmas among hope and fears of suicide bombs
- 2014-12-17 - The parishes of Maiduguri cares for more than 5,000 displaced people fleeing Boko Haram
- 2014-12-01 - Boko Haram: assault on the capital of Yobe, new victims over the weekend
- 2014-11-29 - Mgr. Kaigama: "Boko Haram attacks Muslims who do not think like them"