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Nigerian Government Accused of War Crimes in Fight Against Boko Haram — Over 7,000 Prisoners Said to Die in Custody

Nigerian soldier abusing captives. (Screen capture from video)
Nigerian soldier abusing captives. (Screen capture from video)

By Amnesty International
The story is so shocking it is almost hard to believe. But evidence released today by Amnesty International – based on dozens of military documents and correspondence as well as interviews with victims, eyewitnesses and members of the security forces -- reveals that senior officials of the Nigerian military had full knowledge of the arbitrary detentions and high rates of deaths and failed to take action to stop these human rights violations.
RELATED STORY: Nigeria - Army Accused of Killing Hundreds After 'Islamists' Attack Barracks — Amnesty International Claims 600 Killed, Half Civilians
A high-ranking military officer gave Amnesty International a list of 683 detainees who died over a five-month period from October 2012 in Giwa barracks. Based on his visits and discussions with soldiers stationed there, he estimated that “close to 5,000 people” have died there since the beginning of 2013.

Most of the deaths are still officially unrecorded.

"The hundreds of unidentified bodies, the evidence of mass graves and the harrowing stories of starvation and abuse coming out of the country’s military barracks demand nothing less than an urgent investigation and for those responsible to be brought to justice," said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International's Secretary General.

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