Following the release of a video which was showing alleged Nigerian soldiers carrying out extra-judicial killing, there has been a popular outcry after the video was aired on PBS.
In a response to the tirade of messages to the Nigerian embassy, the Nigerian ambassador to the US, Professor Ade Adefuye has written an international press statement denying the federal government involvement in the killings.
The letter is dated Monday, September 15, 2014 and made public by the special adviser to the President on media and publicity, Reuben Abati via his Facebook page.
In the letter Adefuye acknowledged seeing the video on the American media house on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 showing a purported human rights abuse by Nigerian soldiers in the north eastern part of the country, where Boko Haram operations are more evident.
He reiterated that the Federal Government of Nigeria is committed to holding high standards in all spheres of civil service and the military. He also state that the Nigerian government is also committed to upholding human rights to the highest level including for those who involve in acts of terrorism, adding that a full scale investigation will be carried out to ascertain the validity of the video, as the government will not sit back and allow a flagrant violation of the human rights of Nigerian citizens.
Adefuye went on to deny the claims that the atrocities were perpetrated by Nigerian soldiers, reminding the international community of a series of crimes done by Boko Haram sect members using uniforms of Nigerian soldiers as camouflage, bringing back to memory the kidnap of over 200 schoolgirls from Chibok, in Borno state which was possible due to the army uniforms with which the insurgents were garbed, which made it easy for the girls to believe that they were there to help them.
He further reminded the international community of the interception of a large consignment of military apparel recently in Kano, which was brought into the country via the Niger/Nigeria border.
He stated that every democracy must hold a higher standard than any enemy they face, with the media providing necessary checks and balance, although terror groups like al-Qaeda, ISIS and Boko Haram freely make use of such media to produce and disseminate compelling content with the aim of legitimising their cause, instilling fear and demonizing state actors.
He said that although the Nigerian government is not claiming to run a flawless campaign, it will do everything within its power to validate the claims in the video.
Read his statement below: