UNICEF warns Boko Haram recruiting thousands of children

World Today

NIGERIA-UNREST-ISLAMISTS-AIDA girl carries her brother on her back at a camp for Internal displaced people (IDP) in Monguno, on February 15, 2017. Women and children are the most tragic manifestation of the humanitarian fallout of the Boko Haram insurgency as most of them are suffering from lack of food, clean water and medical care. (AFP PHOTO / FLORIAN PLAUCHEUR)

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has expressed growing concern over the recruitment of children in northern Nigeria.

They are being recruited into militancy linked to Boko Haram militants.

The UN estimates 1.3 million children have been displaced by the insurgency and could be subjected to exploitation and radicalization.

CGTN’s Sophia Adengo reports.

UNICEF warns Boko Haram recruiting thousands of children

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has expressed growing concern over the recruitment of children in northern Nigeria. The UN estimates 1.3 million children have been displaced by the insurgency and could be subjected to exploitation and radicalization.

Boko Haram is recruiting children to its ranks.

For eight years now, the extremist group Boko Haram has been fighting Nigerian troops in the northeast, displacing thousands and devastating communities.

Aid Agencies like UNICEF say reported cases of the use of children by the militants is too high to ignore.

According to military reports, Boko Haram continues to raid villages to replenish its ranks with children, under the guise they are fighting an Islamic holy war.

Over the past year, militants from Boko Haram have been largely pushed back from territory they were holding in the north.

The government maintains the protection of children and communities affected by conflict is always been a top priority.

Critics say stopping the predatory recruitment of children will depend largely on securing the country.

UNICEF estimates nearly 30 percent of children in Borno where Boko Haram has had its firm footprint do not have access to primary education, making it harder to stay away from the lure of the militants.

Until stability is restored to the northeast many say there is much more to be done.