Nigeria: Violence

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 5th February 2020.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports of (1) executions of Christians in Plateau State in Nigeria; and (2) targeted killings and kidnappings by Boko Haram and Fulani extremists; whether they discussed these issues with President Muhammadu Buhari at the UK–Africa Investment Summit; and what response they received.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State

We are appalled by and condemn the escalating levels of violence, including executions, instigated by Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa (ISWA) in Northern Nigeria. The targeting of Christians, including those from Plateau State, has tragically increased in recent months, although the indiscriminate nature of the groups’ attacks continues to have a devastating effect on all communities. The UK is providing a comprehensive package of support to help tackle the crisis in the North East, including £300 million of humanitarian support over five years (2018-2022).

We welcome President Buhari’s condemnation of recent attacks in Plateau State. The British High Commission engages closely with the federal government, state government, international partners and the National Economic Council to help uphold the Nigerian Constitutional right to freedom of religion, address the drivers of intercommunal violence and push for solutions that meet the needs of all communities affected. To this end, the British High Commissioner visited Plateau State in December 2019 and met with the Governor, Christian and Muslim faith leaders, as well as Fulani communities. They all reported the tragic impact of the violence and discussed the complex root causes. The Prime Minister raised concerns about increasing levels of violence across Nigeria and discussed UK support with President Buhari at the UK-Africa Investment Summit on 20 January.

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