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Amnesty Int'l Report - 2,000 Girls and Women Abducted Since 2014

Abuja — Amnesty International (AI) has released yet another report detailing the gruesome atrocities committed by Boko Haram sect in the North-eastern part of Nigeria.

In a report released on Tuesday to mark the one year anniversary of the abduction of the Chibok school girls, AI said at least 2,000 women and girls were abducted by Boko Haram Sect since the start of 2014.

The 90-page report said many were forced into sexual slavery and trained to fight.

Based on nearly 200 witnesses' accounts, including 28 with abducted women and girls who escaped captivity, the report, titled: 'Our job is to shoot, slaughter and kill: Boko Haram's reign of terror,' documented multiple war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the sect including the killing of at least 5,500 civilians, as it rampaged across North-east Nigeria during 2014 and early 2015.

The report shed new light on the brutal methods used by the armed group in North-east Nigeria where men and boys were regularly conscripted or systematically executed while young women and girls were abducted, imprisoned and in some cases raped, forcibly married and made to participate in armed attacks, sometimes on their own towns and villages.

"The evidence presented in this shocking report, one year after the horrific abduction of the Chibok girls, underlines the scale and depravity of Boko Haram's methods," Salil Shetty, Amnesty International's Secretary General said.

According to her, men and women, boys and girls, Christians and Muslims, have been killed, abducted and brutalised by Boko Haram insurgents during a reign of terror which has affected millions.

She said: "Recent military successes might spell the beginning of the end for Sect but there is a huge amount to be done to protect civilians, resolve the humanitarian crisis and begin the healing process."

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

The 276 schoolgirls abducted from Chibok gained global attention with the help of the#BringBackOurGirls campaign.

However, AI said the missing schoolgirls were only a small proportion of the women, girls, young men and boys abducted by Boko Haram sect.

The report stated that: "Boko Haram inusrgents would take the women and girls they abducted directly to camps in remote communities or to makeshift transits camps such as one established in Ngoshe prison.

"From transit camps Boko Haram insurgents would move them to houses in towns and villages and indoctrinate them with their version of Islam in preparation for marriage."

The report cited the case of one of the girls abducted by the sect, Aisha, a 19-year-old girl, who later escaped from captivity.

A statement from Amnesty International said: "Aisha, 19, spoke to AI about how she was abducted from a friend's wedding in September 2014 along with her sister, the bride and the bride's sister. They Boko Haram, took them to a camp in Gullak, Adamawa State, home to approximately 100 abducted girls. One week later, the sect forced the bride and the bride's sister to marry their fighters. They also taught Aisha and the other women and girls how to fight.

"They used to train girls how to shoot guns. I was among the girls trained to shoot. I was also trained how to use bombs and how to attack a village.

"This training went on for three weeks after we arrived. Then they started sending some of us to operations. I went on one operation to my own village." Aisha said during the three months that she was held captive, she was raped repeatedly, sometimes by groups of up to six fighters.

She also saw more than 50 people killed by Boko Haram insurgents including her sister. "Some of them refused to convert. Some refused to learn how to kill others. They were buried in a mass grave in the bush. They'll just pack the dead bodies and dump them in a big hole, but not deep enough. I didn't see the hole, but we used to perceive the smell from the dead bodies when they start getting rotten," she said.

Since the start of 2014, AI said it documented at least 300 raids and attacks carried out by Boko Haram insurgents 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," the report said.
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