The United Nations (UN) on Tuesday demanded the immediate release of the abducted Chibok schoolgirls.
Speaking through its national information centre in Lagos, which issued a statement, the UN Security Council demanded an unconditional release of all those abducted by Boko Haram, including the 219 Chibok schoolgirls in captivity.
Noting that Boko Haram was on the al-Qaida sanctions list, it condemned the recent terror attacks in Borno and Yobe states and implored the sect to cease all hostilities and surrender.
“The security council expresses its deep sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims and expresses its sympathy to all those injured in these attacks, and to the people and the government of the federal republic of Nigeria as well as the people and governments of other affected countries,” read the statement.
“The security council strongly condemns and deplores all abuses of human rights and where applicable, violations of international humanitarian law by the terrorist group Boko Haram, since 2009, including those involving violence against civilian populations, notably women and children, kidnappings, killings, hostage-taking, pillaging, rape, sexual slavery and other sexual violence, recruitment of children and destruction of civilian property.
“The security council expresses serious concern over the reported violations and abuses of human rights and large-scale displacements of civilian population, including into Nigeria’s neighbouring countries. The council recalls its decision to place Boko Haram on the al-Qaida sanctions list.
“The security council demands that Boko Haram immediately and unequivocally cease all hostilities and all abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law and disarm and demobilise.
“The security council demands the immediate and unconditional release of all those abducted who remain in captivity, including the 276 schoolgirls abducted in Chibok, Bomo state in April 2014. The security council recognises that some of such acts may amount to crimes against humanity and stresses that those responsible for all abuses and violations of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law must be held accountable.”
The council reiterated the primary responsibility of member states to protect civilian populations on their territories, in accordance with their obligations under international law.
“The security council expresses its concern at the scale of the growing humanitarian crisis caused by the activities of Boko Haram, which has resulted in the large-scale displacement of Nigerians within the country and into neighbouring Cameroon, Chad and Niger.
“The security council, in this regard, commends the support provided to the refugees by the governments of the said countries, including with the assistance of humanitarian actors and relevant United Nations entities, and calls on the international community to provide its support in areas which require urgent attention.”