Sat Jun 24 19:20:09 SAST 2017

Nigeria's army launches month-long operation to stem deadly ethnic violence

By Reuters | 2017-04-20 10:11:13.0

The Nigerian army on Wednesday launched a month-long operation to reduce violence in the centre of the country, as ethnically charged fighting pressures a government already tackling Boko Haram in the northeast and militants in the oil-rich south.

Hundreds are thought to have died in clashes that often carry religious overtones in deeply divided Nigeria, with Muslim herders facing off against Christian farmers in a country almost evenly split between the two faiths.

Precise figures for deaths are hard to come by, but the incidents threaten a political backlash for the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, himself a Muslim.

"The operation is aimed at addressing the issue of insecurity in southern Kaduna state and parts of Kano, Plateau and Bauchi states," said the military in a statement.

The army will also offer humanitarian aid to the region including medical support, it said.

Buhari, a former military ruler, had vowed to restore order in Africa's most populous nation when he came to power in May 2015.

Download our App
Download our Apple App Download our Android App

X