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The ICC did not indict Nigerian Army, says Sani Usman
ARMY spokesperson, Sani Usman, says the reports that the International Criminal Court (ICC), The Hague, indicted the Nigerian Army of war crimes were false.
The 2018 Report on the Preliminary Examination Activities of the ICC stated that the institution identified eight potential cases involving the commission of crimes against humanity and war crimes in Nigeria. Six of the cases were against Boko Haram while two were against the Nigerian security forces.
The report read in part: “Specifically, the Office found a reasonable basis to believe that the NSF (Nigerian Security Forces) committed the war crimes of murder pursuant to article 8(2)(c)(i); torture, cruel treatment pursuant to article 8(2)(c)(i); outrages upon personal dignity pursuant to article 8(2)(c)(ii); and intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population.”
The Army spokesman, Usman, clarified the statement, saying the army was not indicted by the ICC, rather the global court had pointed out some issues of interest in the country.
“I just sent a WhatsApp message to one of the Nigerians at The Hague, and honestly, I wish my phone was here, you would have seen his reply,” Usman said during a live television programme on Tuesday.
“I think there is an element of some campaign of calumny and mischief. The International Criminal Court (ICC) in its preliminary report did not say so.
“In fact, what they said is that there were issues of interest in Nigeria, but for them to have come out to indict the Nigerian army, it is not true.”
On Monday, Amnesty International, a global human rights group, had also accused the Nigerian army of committing crimes against humanity in the North East region of the country and called on the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) of the ICC to open an investigation against the army.
“Eight years since the opening of the preliminary examination and faced with the continuing commission of crimes under international law and the possibility of a never-ending preliminary analysis, it is time for the OTP to open a formal investigation in Nigeria,” Amnesty International stated.
The leadership of the Nigeria Army has consistently denied AI’s repeated allegations of gross human rights abuse, saying that the international Non-Governmental Organisation is an enemy of Nigeria and its people.