The United Nations on Sunday added its voice to many calling and condemning the barbaric act perpetrated on innocent farmers at Koshobe village of Mafa Local Government Area of Borno State in the northeast Nigeria.
The UN also may have decided not to keep mum on the killings revealing that, at least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack.
Speaking for the UN, Mr. Edward Kallon, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria says he is outraged and horrified by the gruesome attack against civilians carried out by non-state armed groups in villages near Borno State capital Maiduguri.
His words: “In early afternoon of 28 November, armed men on motorcycles led a brutal attack on civilian men and women who were harvesting their fields in Koshobe and other rural communities in Jere Local Government Area. Reports we are receiving are indicating these innocent farmers were the victims of this callous violence.
“I extend my sincere condolences to the families of the civilians who lost their lives in this atrocious attack. I also wish a speedy recovery to those who were wounded in the incident.
“We have also received reports that several women may have been kidnapped. I call for their immediate release and return to safety.
“My thoughts are also with the rural communities in the area, who are shocked by the brutality of yesterday’s attack and fear for their safety.” Mr Kallon said.
According to him, the entire UN system and the humanitarian community working to provide life-saving and development assistance to the most vulnerable in Borno State is outraged by the incident.
He said, such direct attacks against innocent civilians jeopardize the ability for the most vulnerable people to survive the adversity they are facing, and which the United Nations is striving to alleviate.
“The incident is the most violent direct attack against innocent civilians this year. I call for the perpetrators of this heinous and senseless act to be brought to justice.
“It is unfortunately one of too many such attacks targeting farmers, fishermen and families who are trying to recover some livelihood opportunity after over a decade of conflict.
“I strongly condemn this attack and any act of violence against innocent civilians and I firmly urge all actors on the ground to respect international laws and humanity,” Mr. Kallon added
He observed that, rural communities in Borno State are facing untold hardships.
“Helping them to farm land and rebuild livelihoods are amongst our priorities and the only way to avoid the looming food crisis in Borno State. They and all other civilians need to be protected and spared from any kind of violence.”
The humanitarian coordinator said, there is need for government and all actors in the humanitarian field to put its best to help victims of the crises who are mostly poor to survive challenges they are facing especially at this time when food insecurity in Borno state is high.