Army Rejects ICC Probe - EazyFeeds

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Saturday, 12 December 2020

Army Rejects ICC Probe


 The Nigerian Army on Saturday said the discovery by the International Criminal Court is an unfortunate effort aimed at undermining the troops' resolve to defeat terrorist acts carried out by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.


ICC Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, had on Friday in a statement said there is "reasonable basis to believe that members of the Nigerian Security Forces have committed the following acts constituting crimes against humanity and war crimes; murder, rape, torture, and cruel treatment; enforced disappearance. 


The ICC said others were: the forcible transfer of population; outrages upon personal dignity; intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such and individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities; unlawful imprisonment.


But the army in a statement signed by its spokesman, Brig-Gen Sagir Musa, urged local or international organisations not to allow themselves to be used to destabilise or destroy the troops' morale by the sponsors of mischief in Nigeria.


The statement reads, "The Nigerian Army's attention has been drawn to a press release by the Prosecutor General of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Friday, December 12, alleging that she had found a reasonable basis to believe that 'members of the Nigerian Security Forces have committed acts constituting crimes against humanity and war crimes.' This was immediately followed by a release by the branch of Amnesty International in Nigeria' demanding a full investigation of atrocities by Nigerian forces. 


"There is no doubt that such a statement and instigation can distract the Nigerian Army troops with its demoralising effects. It will have negative consequences on troops morale, interest in military service by Nigerians and a severe setback to all our internal security operations in the country. 


"However, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen, Tukur Buratai, enjoins Nigerian Army troops to ignore the distractions and call on the gallant forces never to be worried or demoralised by these moves. 


"The COAS, who is currently in self-isolation as part of precaution against the COVID-19, would soon be joining our gallant troops in the North East at the end of the mandatory isolation period to continue giving the desired leadership and support to the brave and patriotic soldiers of the Nigerian Army. 


"He said we must fight on to secure our country and people. He further enjoined troops to ignore the wicked, unnecessary distractions and direct troops to fully concentrate on the final defeat of Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorist group which is in sight. 


"He also charges the troops to work hard and be guided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Rules of Engagement, the Code of Conduct and the Standing Operating Procedures for all Nigerian Army Operations.


"The COAS wishes to assure Nigerians and reiterate that the Nigerian Army is not only protecting human rights but also sustaining human rights nationally and globally. Our professional conduct over the years and most recently during the #ENDSARS protests at Lekki Village near Lagos are clear testimonies to the Nigerian Army's posture on promoting sustainable human rights policy. 


"The Nigerian Army wishes to advise local or international organisations not to allow themselves to be used to destabilise or destroy the troops' morale by the sponsors of mischief in Nigeria."


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