The building we raided doesn’t have a UN designation, says army

 

Soldiers

The Nigerian army says one of the buildings on which its personnel conducted a search on Friday, which is said to be housing some United Nations officials, has no sign to show it was a UN property.

Soldiers had arrived the building at around 2 am on Friday but were prevented from gaining entrance into the premises until 7 am when they eventually went in to carry out a search, allegedly looking for some smuggled weapons.

Earlier on Friday, Edward Kallon, Coordinator of UN humanitarian activities in Nigeria, had issued a statement saying that the search was unauthorized.

Kallon said the action was capable of hampering “the critical work that is being carried out every day to support the most vulnerable in the region” and called on the Nigerian government “to provide clarification”.

However, in a separate statement, the military explained that the UN facility was not specifically targeted but rather all the buildings in the area were searched, adding that there was no sign on the building to show it is being used by the UN.

According to the statement, the search became necessary as more and more Boko Haram fighters escape from the Sambisa Forest into the Maiduguri metropolis due to intensified counter-attacks by the military.

“In the last one week cordon and search operations were conducted in Jiddari-Polo, Muna Garage, Jakana amongst several other areas,” the statement read.

“On 10th August 2017, Theatre Command received information from one of its credible sources that some high value BHT suspects had infiltrated into Pompomari Bye Pass.






     

     

    “It therefore became expedient to take preemptive action by combing the general area through a cordon and search operations. The operation was successfully conducted as over 30 houses were searched.

    “One of such included a property, which was said to be occupied by United Nations Staff, although the property did not carry a UN designation.

    “On the whole, operation in the general area was successfully concluded but no arrest was made because the suspects were not found”.

    The army reiterated that the operations were being conducted “to safeguard lives and properties but not targeted at any individual or group.”

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