The Washington Post

Report: Security forces raped rescued women

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Nigerian soldiers and selfdefens­e forces have raped women rescued from the Boko Haram extremist group, Amnesty Internatio­nal alleged in a report Thursday that Nigeria’s military dismissed as “false.”

The report alleges that thousands of women and girls were separated from their families in camps in northeaste­rn Nigeria and abused. Some were raped in exchange for food, the report says, and others were beaten and called “Boko Haram wives.”

The report is the latest allegation of human rights abuses by Nigeria’s security forces as they try to combat the Islamist extremist group, which has displaced millions of people over the years and killed or abducted tens of thousands.

The report, based on more than 250 interviews, says the abuses occurred as Nigeria’s military pushed to reclaim territory from Boko Haram starting in 2015.

Thousands of civilians freed during the operations were ordered into displaceme­nt camps, where thousands died between late 2015 and late 2016 from lack of food, water and health care, the human rights group says.

Nigeria’s government rejected the Amnesty report as “short on credibilit­y,” while the military called it part of a “malicious trend” by the group.

Boko Haram continues to carry out attacks in northeaste­rn Nigeria despite claims by the government and the military that its insurgency has been crushed.

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