After Nigeria declared a state of emergency in three of its northern states, the U.S. State Department has expressed concern over what it calls Nigeria’s “heavy-handed” response to Boko Haram’s violence. The Islamic extremist has been conducting an armed insurgency in Nigeria’s northern states since 2009 and is attempting to crave out a separate Islamic state where it can impose its strict interpretation of Sharia law. Christians, who are in the minority in northern Nigeria, are often targeted by the group for some of its most brutal attacks.
5/25/2013 Nigeria (Voice of America) – The U.S. State Department says it is concerned about what it calls a “heavy-handed” response by some Nigerian forces in their fight against Islamic militants in the north.
A U.S. official said Friday the State Department has been monitoring the situation and concludes that human rights abuses are continuing. The official says Secretary of State John Kerry plans to meet with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan on the sidelines of the African Union summit in Ethiopia.
Nigeria has declared a state of emergency in the north, where Boko Haram extremists have launched numerous terrorist attacks primarily against police and Christians.