The Nigerian military has “burned and forcibly displaced” entire villages in response to the recent escalation of terror attacks by the Islamic militants Boko Haram, according to a report from Amnesty International published Friday.
It reported numerous cases of Nigerian troops forcing the displacement of villagers, burning their property, and the arbitrary detention and consequent torture of civilians, all of which would amount to war crimes.
Residents interviewed described troops going house to house rounding people up before forcing them to walk to the main road and board trucks.
“These brazen acts of razing entire villages, deliberately destroying civilian homes and forcibly displacing their inhabitants with no imperative military grounds, should be investigated as possible war crimes,” said Osai Ojigho, Director of Amnesty International Nigeria.
The bombshell report was published as the Nigerian military faces continued national and international scrutiny for their failure to defeat Boko Haram, despite repeated claims from their leadership and even President Muhammed Buhari that the caliphate had been eradicated.