Army Parleys With Amnesty International

In a bid to resolve the long standing controversies over alleged human rights violations, the Nigerian Army has interfaced with Amnesty International on the matter.

Speaking during the meeting, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai, promised that the Nigerian Army would continue to collaborate with the Amnesty International, as well as other stakeholders, adding that all aspects of human rights would continue to be respected by the Nigerian Army as enshrined in the Constitution. General Buratai further assured Amnesty International that the Nigerian Army would always discharge its duties professionally and responsively in line with his vision, affirming that no personnel would be involved in human rights abuses while carrying out assigned tasks. He thanked the delegation for the visit, stating that it is a milestone achievement as it is the first time ever for the two institutions to meet minds in order to understand each other.

General Buratai further described some allegations against the Army by some civil society groups as sentimental, emphasizing that the Army as an institution is committed to the protection of lives and property of citizens. The COAS  also stated that the Nigerian Army was ready to receive constructive criticisms in the line of its duty through its newly established human rights desk across all formations of the Nigerian Army.

Responding, the Africa Director, Amnesty International, Netsanet Belay, thanked the COAS for the reception accorded him and members of his entourage. He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his zero tolerance on human rights abuses since assumption of office. He expressed satisfaction with the clarifications by the Nigerian Army on some of the allegations leveled against the institution, describing the visit as fruitful. It would be recalled that this is the first time that the Nigerian Army and Amnesty International would be having such a meeting. Present during the visit were some Principal Staff Officers of Army Headquarters, Directors, Corps Commanders, some members of the Amnesty International, UN Human Rights Advisers, members of some Civil Society Organizations, among others.
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