Nigeria: Abduction

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 11th January 2021.

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Photo of Carla Lockhart Carla Lockhart DUP, Upper Bann

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what support the Government is providing to the Nigerian Government to protect children attending school from abduction after the abduction of pupils from a secondary school in Katsina state in December 2020.

Photo of James Duddridge James Duddridge Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

The UK Government was deeply concerned about the abduction of Nigerian schoolboys from their school in Kankara, Katsina State on 11 December. Abductions of Nigerian schoolchildren are abhorrent and must stop. We welcome the news that they were released on 17 December. Following the attack, I publicly stressed that schoolchildren need to be protected and that all children should be able to access education without fear.

The UK provides a comprehensive package of stabilisation, development and humanitarian assistance to support communities in Northern Nigeria. Through the Education in Emergencies programme, we help fund the education of children affected by conflict. This includes supporting schools and communities to create conflict risk reduction plans to help protect children in schools. Since 2018, we have supported over 200,000 children in the North East to receive an education. We continue to advocate for the protection of children and schools across Nigeria. For example, we encourage the Nigerian Government to follow the Safe Schools Declaration, which sets out international guidelines to protect students, teachers and their schools during armed conflict.

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