83 Nigerian children deployed as 'human bombs' since January: UNICEF

23 August 2017, 04:53 AM
83 Nigerian children deployed as 'human bombs' since January: UNICEF
83 Nigerian children deployed as 'human bombs' since January: UNICEF

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has put forth a horrendous face of Nigeria's militant Islamist group Boko Haram, which has used at least 83 children as "human bombs" in the country's northeast region between the month of January and August.

The number is four times higher than it was all for 2016, UNICEF said in statement issued on Tuesday.

According to the agengcy 55 of them constituted girls, most often under the age of 15. Twenty-seven were boys, and one was a baby strapped to a girl.

"The use of children in such attacks has had a further impact of creating suspicion and fear of children who have been released, rescued or escaped from Boko Haram. As a result, many children who have managed to get away from captivity face rejection when they try to reintegrate into their communities, compounding their suffering", the statement said.

Read more: Nigeria: 3 women suicide bombers kill 28, wound 82

Such fatal circumstances are a result massive displacement and malnutrition crisis. There are 1.7 million people displaced by the insurgency in the northeast, 85 per cent of them in Borno State, where most of these attacks take place.

UNICEF said the trend worsened the sufferings of children in the insurgency now in its eighth year, adding that the children so used as "human bombs" were victims and not perpetrators of the crime.

First Published: Wednesday, August 23, 2017 04:44 AM

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