Is Boko Haram Succeeding in Dividing Nigeria? By Ambassador mo

Posted on at

“The fact that people are already leaving some areas where they are in a minority, out of fear of attacks by the majority, shows just how dangerous this is becoming for the country as a whole. Anyone inciting violence or hatred must be held accountable, no matter who they are,” offered UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. Nigeria’s political and religious leaders must stop the escalating sectarian violence urged HC Pillay “It is essential that the country’s leadership, and especially its Muslim and Christian leaders, join forces to unequivocally condemn all violence, including retaliation, and encourage their followers to identify and help arrest all those involved in killings and other acts of violence that have been taking place.” Writing a Book of Hate in Face of Overwhelming History of Co-existence: Attacks based upon religious identity have been not uncommon although infrequent over last few decades in Nigeria. Most recently Boko Haram has sough to instigate a religious division of Nigeria through attacks, killings and fear. There have also been attacks by Boko Haram against mosques and Muslims, presumably not reactionary enough and looking to confront Boko Haram. Boko Haram also bombed UN offices in Nigeria during the summer of 2011, again seeking to instigate conflict. Most recently Muslims and mosques have become targets in Christian majority areas, presumably at hands of Christians who have vowed revenge for Boko Haram’s attacks and killings. Boko Haram’s new leader Abubakar Shekau recently appeared on video (Photo Above) and cited a list of grievances including the killings of Muslims by Christians. Overwhelmingly though Muslims and Christians have not only lived in peace but shared towns, businesses, social life and families in this country of many different ethnic/tribe groups. One must objectively fear that Boko Haram’s strategy is at least in part bearing the fruit of fear, hate and revenge – a spiral difficult to curtail once set into motion. “Everybody will be the loser if Boko Haram succeeds in its aim and efforts to sow discord between Muslim and Christian, or pit Northerner against Southerner,” Ms. Pillay said. Respect of Rule of Law, Including With Respect to Those Accused of Crimes/Killings: HC Pillay urged - it was vital that the security forces respect human rights, and avoid excessive use of force, when conducting operations so as not to stoke further tensions and resentment. This was an implicit reference to the summary execution of Boko Haram’s leader Malam Mohammed Yusuf and apparently hundreds of followers in 2009. (Read: - “Nigeria Road to Partition as Boko Haram Schemes” - HC Pillay noted that members of Boko Haram and other groups and entities, “if judged to have committed widespread or systematic attacks against a civilian population – including on grounds such as religion or ethnicity – could be found guilty of crimes against humanity.” Deliberate acts leading to population “cleansing” on grounds of religion or ethnicity would also amount to a crime against humanity. Coinciding with “Fuel Riots”: The current protests in Nigeria over fuel subsidies have to some degree competed with Boko Haram for media attention and degree of Government focus. HC Pillay also expressed concern about the recent loss of life during protests over the removal of fuel subsidies. She urged: “the Government of Nigeria has a duty to ensure all its security personnel avoid use of excessive force and to investigate whether or not all necessary precautions were taken before members of the security forces resorted to the use of live ammunition. At this critical juncture, the authorities at all levels need to earn the respect and support of the general public by scrupulously observing human rights, and showing they too are accountable for any excesses.” By Ambassador Muhamed Sacirbey Facebook – Become a Fan at “Diplomatically Incorrect” Twitter – Follow us at DiplomaticallyX War Crimes Justice” Channel -

About the author


"Voice of the Global Citizen"- Diplomatically Incorrect ( provide film and written reports on issues reflecting diplomatic discourse and the global citizen. Ambassador Muhamed Sacirbey (@MuhamedSacirbey) is former Foreign Minister Ambassador of Bosnia & Herzegovina at the United Nations. "Mo" is also signatory of the Rome Conference/Treaty establishing the International…

Subscribe 0