Military tackles Amnesty Int’l, says troops conduct evacuation.
The Defence Headquarters, Abuja, on Friday tackled the Amnesty International over its report, saying its troops usually evacuate civilians in the North-East from the line of war to prevent casualties and the military does not engage in arson.
The DHQ noted that Amnesty International by its report, seemed to be “deliberately supporting the callous acts of terrorism perpetuated by the Boko Haram terrorists and the Islamic State West African Province.”
The Director, Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, said in a statement that the AI must understand that Nigeria is at war against terrorism in the North-East and that the troops had a constitutional mandate to protect lives and property.
He said, “The DHQ has taken cognisance of yet another falsified report by Amnesty International in a campaign of calumny targeting the Nigerian military. The Defence Headquarters wishes to state unambiguously that the allegations being touted by AI is nothing but a betrayal of its lack of in-depth knowledge of the goings-on in the North-East theatre of operation.
“It is expedient to state that troops of Operation Lafiya Dole do not employ arson as an operational tactic. It is a well-known fact, going by the modus operandi of Boko Haram that they have often engaged in the atrocious acts of looting and burning of villages, as well as destroying infrastructure.
“Amnesty International must understand the fact that Nigeria is at war against terrorism in the North-East and that the troops have a constitutional mandate to protect lives and property, even if it means conducting an evacuation to save and secure lives of civilians in the conflict. Protecting civilians by evacuating them from the line of fire during combat is not a violation of the international law of conflict or a war crime.”FOLLOW US on