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Boko Haram has kidnapped 2000 women in a year: Amnesty

Boko Haram has kidnapped 2000 women in a year: Amnesty

WASHINGTON: The Nigerian extremist group Boko Haram has abducted 2,000 women and girls since early 2014, Amnesty International reported on Tuesday.

“Many have been forced into sexual slavery and trained to fight,” the rights group reported.

It’s been a year since Boko Haram kidnapped more than 200 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok in northeast Nigeria, causing worldwide condemnation of their activities.

On Tuesday, various human rights groups highlighted the atrocities Boko Haram has committed since the kidnapping. Amnesty International released a report – “Our Job is to Shoot, Slaughter and Kill’ Boko Haram’s Reign of Terror” – which documents multiple war crimes and crimes against humanity the group has committed.

It points that those 200 girls who were kidnapped on April 14, 2014, were only a fraction of the women and girls abducted since the start of 2014.

During 2014 and early 2015, Boko Haram killed at least 5,500 civilians in northeast Nigeria. Their activities forced more than 1.5 million to leave the region by the end of the year.

The Amnesty report also underlines the brutal methods the group used for conscripting young boys and how it systematically executes and young women and girls it abducts. They are imprisoned and in some cases raped, forcibly married and made to participate in armed attacks, sometimes on their own towns and villages.

The report contains graphic evidence, including new satellite images, of the scale of devastation that Boko Haram have left in their wake.

Boko Haram would take the women and girls they abducted directly to camps in remote communities and force them to marry its fighters.

Since the start of 2014, Amnesty International documented at least 300 raids and attacks carried out by Boko Haram against civilians. During their attacks on towns, they would systematically target the military or police first, capturing arms and ammunition, before turning on the civilian population. They would shoot anyone trying to escape, rounding up and executing men of fighting age.

Published in Dawn, April 15th, 2015

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