An Onitsha-based human rights organization, the International Society for Civil Liberties and the Rule of Law, Intersociety, claimed on Saturday that between January and June 10th, 2021, 350 Igbo Christians were extrajudicially killed by Fulani-dominated security personnel in Nigeria’s South East and South-South regions.
According to the human rights group, soldiers from the Nigerian Army were responsible for 210 of the deaths, while the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies were responsible for 140.
This was stated in a statement signed by the chairman of the Board of Trustees, Emeka Umeagbalasi, and other key members of the group.
The group also claimed that Imo and Abia states had 230 such deaths, while Rivers State had 40.
According to the statement, innocent civilians were killed extrajudicially in the following states: Akwa Ibom 35, Anambra 30, Ebonyi 25, and Cross River 20.
Intersoociety also revealed that the region’s youths are the targets.
According to the statement, “Soldiers of the Nigerian military and operatives of the Nigeria Police Force are responsible for shooting and killing no fewer than 350 Igbo civilians, all Christians; soldiers and other military personnel accounted for 210 deaths, or 70%, and police and others 140.”
Over 90% of these defenseless and unarmed citizens were shot and killed on the basis of their ethnicity and religion. Many of those who were shot and killed between May and June 10th are young male Igbos. Imo and Abia accounted for roughly 68 percent of the 350 killings across the eight states since January 2021, accounting for 230 deaths. In other words, no fewer than 150 civilian lives were lost in Imo over the last 160 days of 2021, and no fewer than 100 were killed in a single week, between May 25th and June 1st, 2021.
“The majority of the killings in Imo took place in Owerri and environs, as well as Orlu and environs. Abia State had the second highest number of civilian deaths, with 80 killings, the majority of which occurred in Aba and environs, as well as Umuahia and environs. Assaults have also been reported in the Asa and Ohafia regions of the state. No fewer than 40 civilians were killed in Rivers State. 35 civilians were killed in Akwa Ibom State, 30 in Anambra State, 25 in Ebonyi State, and 20 in Cross River State. Delta State has no civilian deaths on record, but it is likely that it is one of the states with forced disappearances, custodial killings, or unlawful executions.
“The 350 “circumstantially ascertainable or projectable” killings included those who were instantly shot dead and others who were arrested unarmed and killed, but did not include victims of military abductions who were abducted and bundled or taken to undisclosed or secret locations, killed, and buried in secrecy.
Also independently investigated and discovered was the fact that out of the total military and police killings, including the referenced 350 extrajudicial killings, the number of non-state actor violent citizens combatively involved is not more than 30 in total, implying that more than 90% of all slain citizens were killed extrajudicially and outside due process and law. More than 90% of the slain civilians were also wrongfully labeled and criminally stigmatized.”