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Current Page: World | Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Nigerian Mother, Daughters Say Father Had His Throat Slashed by Boko Haram as They Fled Baga Massacre

Nigerian Mother, Daughters Say Father Had His Throat Slashed by Boko Haram as They Fled Baga Massacre

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau speaks at an unknown location in this still image taken from an undated video released by Nigerian Islamist rebel group Boko Haram. | (PHOTO: Courtesy - REUTERS/Boko Haram handout via Reuters TV)

The horror stories from terror group Boko Haram's massacre in Baga earlier this month, believed to have killed as many as 2,000 people, continue flooding in. One woman has described how her husband was killed and had his throat cut by the jihadists as she fled the town with their three daughters.

"I am on my own with my three girls; my husband was killed," 30-year-old Hadija Umar said at a UNICEF camp, after having fled across Lake Chad.

"He had gone to buy fish when Boko Haram fighters launched their attack," Umar explained, according to BBC News. "Women told me that they found his body floating in the lake, his hands tied and his throat cut."

Umar is one of thousands who fled Baga and the surrounding villages to neighboring Chad, where relief agencies have been attempting to help them with what they can. Most of the women and children who escaped said that they lost relatives in the attack, and described how they were hunted by jihadists through the bushes.

Several reports have noted that Boko Haram, which has been waging a war on the Nigerian government since 2009, targeted women and children in one of their largest massacres to date.

Last week, Amnesty International said that the militants killed a woman who was in the middle of giving birth to a baby boy. The agency also released satellite images from Baga, revealing the extent of the devastation.

The exact death count from the raid on Baga has still not been confirmed. Christian leaders in the country said that several churches were also burned down, highlighting Boko Haram's continued targeting of Christians in particular.

"I received a message of the Christians Association of Nigeria, the association of Christian churches in Nigeria, which states that in that area Boko Haram has burned several churches and caused numerous victims" said Fr. Patrick Tor Alumuku, director of social communications of the Archdiocese of Abuja.

In responce to the attacks, Nigerigan Bishop Oliver Dashe Doeme of Maiduguri called on Western military intervention to stop Boko Haram's rampage.

Doeme said, according to Catholic News Service, that "a concerted military campaign is needed by the West to crush Boko Haram."

Organizations such as the International Medical Corps have been helping the refugees in Chad, though noted there is a growing need for supplies.

"This sudden influx of refugees poses a risk of epidemic outbreak," said Dr. Bobo Makoso.

"Agencies are trying to guarantee that everybody is vaccinated against measles and meningitis upon arrival."

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau claimed responsibility for the attack in Baga, and threatened neighboring countries of similar raids.

The militant group has also carried out attacks in Cameroon, but it has been less successful there and has been pushed back by the army.

The United Nations Security Council condemned the Baga attacks earlier this week, though did not outline a specific plan for stopping such massacres in the future.

"The Security Council demands that Boko Haram immediately and unequivocally cease all hostilities and all abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law and disarm and demobilize," said Cristián Barros Melet, Chile's permanent representative to the UN.

The UNSC accused Boko Haram of violating international humanitarian law, and heavily targeting women and children. The terror group has also carried out a number of kidnappings, including taking 276 schoolgirls from Chibok in April 2014 and reportedly marrying them off to militants.

"The Security Council underlines the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice in accordance with international law and relevant Security Council resolutions," Melet added.

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