30 000 fled Nigerian town in two days amid Boko Haram threat: UN

2019-01-29 13:21
File: AFP

File: AFP

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Over 30 000 people fled the Nigerian town of Rann and across the border to Cameroon over the weekend amid fears of renewed attacks by Boko Haram jihadists, the UN said on Tuesday.

"All the population seems to be panicking and they are on the run as a preemptive measure to save their lives," UN refugee agency spokesman Babar Baloch told reporters in Geneva.

Rann, near the border with Cameroon in northern Borno state, already saw an exodus of some 9,000 people earlier this month after a Boko Haram attack on January 14 left 14 people dead.

Baloch said that Cameroon had sent back the 9 000 refugees and had initially sent in troops that are part of a multinational taskforce to protect the town.

"It was a bit peaceful, but as far as we understand now, that multinational taskforce has left," he said.

Refugees had told aid workers that Boko Haram militants had "promised to return to Rann," he said, explaining the panic.

He said UNHCR was reiterating its call to Cameroonian authorities "to keep the borders open, as we see thousands fleeing every day".

* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook.

Baloch said that a recent upsurge in violence in northeastern Nigeria had already driven more than 80,000 civilians to seek refuge in already crowded camps or in towns in Borno State, "where they are surviving in tough living conditions."

Rann, he said, had already been housing some 80,000 displaced people.

"The escalation in the conflict has thwarted people's intention of returning to their homes," he said, adding that some refugees who had attempted to return home from Cameroon had been displaced multiple times inside Nigeria or forced to become refugees again in Cameroon.

"The hostilities have strained humanitarian operations there and forced aid workers to pull out from some locations," he said.

Jens Laerke, spokesman for the UN humanitarian agency, meanwhile told reporters that we have "260 aid workers who were withdrawn from three locations in Borno state" since early December.

Read more on:    boko haram  |  nigeria  |  west africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.