Nigerian troops compelled the entire population of a town of 10,000 people in northeastern Borno state to move without providing any caution on Monday, the United Nations stated on Thursday.
A U.N. statement stated that soldiers shifted the people of Jakana to a camp in the city of Maiduguri about 40 km (25 miles) away, some arriving the camp with nothing, not even shoes on their feet.
The armed factions were carrying out an operation to wipe out Islamist Boko Haram rebels, Abdulmalik Bulama Biu, a commanding officer in the northeast briefed. The military and government restored nearly 5,000 Jakana residents to the town on Thursday, Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency mentioned on its official Twitter account.
Jakana residents stated that the military was protecting the population for members of Boko Haram.
The northeast of Nigeria, sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest energy producer, is the main battleground in its decade-long fight against Boko Haram and fellow Islamist insurgent group Islamic State West Africa Province.
A surge in militant assaults in December in which towns and military bases were invaded placed tens of thousands of civilians to flee into Maiduguri, bumping the population of existing camps.
Edward Kallon, U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Nigeria, in the statement, stated that the entire town of Jakana was vacated, and people were compelled to move to Maiduguri with a short time to gather their personal belongings.
Last June, the Nigerian government instructed thousands of people to depart the respective safety of their camp in Maiduguri to live in a town in an unsafe area as pressure increased to show progress in the war against rebels before the elections, sources familiar with the situation stated. In September, the town was ambushed, forcing the population to flee.