Posted by News Express | 23 May 2014 | 3,294 times
The United Nations yesterday blacklisted Boko Haram and imposed sanctions on the group as an Al-Qaeda-linked terror group, reports AFP.
The designation, which was immediately welcomed by Britain and the United States, came into effect after no objections were raised by the Security Council’s 15 members.
The move subjects Boko Haram to UN sanctions, including an arms embargo, asset freeze and travel ban.
The group, which was created 10 years ago, demands the creation of an Islamic state in mainly Muslim northern Nigeria. Their attacks have left thousands dead since 2009.
US ambassador Samantha Power hailed the move as “an important step” in support of Nigeria’s efforts “to defeat Boko Haram and hold its murderous leadership accountable for atrocities.”
Nigeria, criticised by the United States for failing to react quickly enough to the rise of Boko Haram, had asked the Al-Qaeda sanctions committee to blacklist the group and impose sanctions.
“It is significant step,” Nigerian ambassador Joy Ogwu told reporters in anticipation on Wednesday. “The important thing is to attack the problem and that is terrorism,” she added.
The imposition of UN sanctions was recommended last Saturday at a conference in Paris that brought together Benin, Britain, Chad, Cameroon, France Niger, Nigeria and the United States.
The United States and a number of other countries have already designated Boko Haram as a terrorist organisation in an attempt to cut off any overseas funding for the group.
Power said the United States would continue doing everything possible to help bring back the kidnapped schoolgirls and to work with the government of Nigeria to eliminate Boko Haram.
“The Security Council has helped to close off important avenues of funding, travel and weapons to Boko Haram, and shown global unity against their savage actions,” she said in a statement.
Meanwhile, as the UN was cracking down on Boko Haram, suspected members of the terror group shot dead 29 farm workers as they tilled their fields in a village in Borno State, North-East Nigeria, a police source said yesterday.
The source at state police headquarters said no fewer than 10 more people had been injured in Wednesday’s attack on Chukku Nguddoa, in which most of the village, including its grain store, were razed, Reuters reported.
Militants killed 17 people in Alagarno village on Tuesday and burnt many houses.
The attack according to a resident, Bakura Mustapha, occurred barely 10 days after the withdrawal of military troops from the village.
Sources said the armed men, driving 15 vehicles, stormed the village at about 11am on Wednesday and opened fire on armless residents killing 29 people. A mosque, houses and shops were burnt completely.
Another source said, after killing about 29 people, many residents of the village who sustained gunshot wounds are now receiving treatment at an undisclosed hospital in Cameroon.
He said buildings in the village were completely burnt down.
“As I am talking to you now, we have counted 29 dead bodies. Houses and shops were burnt down, the village is deserted with no any presence of security operatives,” the source said.
“Some of our people fled to Gamboru Ngala council area, while others fled into neighbouring Cameroon said another source on telephone,” he added.
Police spokesman Gideon Jubrin could not be reached for confirmation. But a top security source who is not authorised to speak confirmed the attack.
•Photo shows UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon.
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