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Over 1,800 killed in Nigeria violence since January

Amnesty says killings in various communal violence and armed bandit attacks has doubled compared to 2017

Over 1,800 killed in Nigeria violence since January

By Rafiu Ajakaye

LAGOS, Nigeria

At least 1,813 people have been killed in various communal violence and armed bandits attacks across 17 Nigerian states since January 2018, the Amnesty International said on Thursday.

The figures released by the rights watchdog is nearly double the number of such deaths in the whole of 2017.

"Independently verified estimated figures indicate that since January 2018, at least 1,813 people have been murdered in 17 states, which is double the 894 people killed in 2017,” Osai Ojigho, the organization's chief for Nigeria, said in a statement.

“We are gravely concerned about the rising spate of killings across the country, especially the communal clashes between farmers and herders, and attacks by bandits.”

Ojigho said Nigerian authorities are not doing enough to end the killings in spite of their responsibility to protect lives and properties.

The statement came five days after nearly 100 people were killed in attacks blamed on herders in central Nigeria Plateau state -- itself an alleged reprisal for an attack that had earlier claimed four herdsmen and dozens of their cows in the state.

On Thursday, an annual report of the UN Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict said about 881 children were either killed or maimed by the Boko Haram terror group and Nigerian security forces in 2017.

The report said the mistaken bombing of an internally-displaced persons camp in Rann, Borno State, by the Nigerian military had caused the death or maiming of 235 children.

Apart from the 235 killed or maimed in the Rann bombing, the military also killed or maimed 26 children suspected of carrying improvised explosive devices in 2017, according to the report.

The report also covered the deaths of children in Afghanistan, India, the Philippines, Syria and Yemen.

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