Scores dead as Nigeria fighter jet mistakenly bombs refugees’ camp

Scores dead as Nigeria fighter jet mistakenly bombs refugees’ camp

Tuesday, January 17, 2017 7:19 pm

An Air Force attack helicopter

An Air Force attack helicopter

A Nigerian Air Force fighter jet on a mission against Boko Haram extremists on Tuesday mistakenly bombed a refugee camp, killing more than 100 refugees and wounding aid workers.

The Borno state government official is helping to coordinate the evacuation of wounded. The official spoke Tuesday on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to reporters.

Maj. Gen. Lucky Irabor, Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, the military code name for the fight against Boko Haram in North East Nigeria confirmed the accidental bombardment in northeast Rann, near the border with Cameroon.

General Irabor said the wounded are Nigerians working for Doctors Without Borders and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

“We got information that Boko Haram terrorists were gathering somewhere in Kala Balge Local Government. We coordinate our air component and strike the location but somehow, some civilians were killed,” he said.

“Two of our soldiers were also wounded,” he added.

He said the military has already sent helicopter to evacuate the wounded persons. He could not comment on whether or not the incident was a tactical error by the military.

General Irabor added that it was rather the cost of war, urging the people to work together to ensure peace return to the troubled northeast States.

He said the military will investigate the cause of the problem.

“It is too early for us to determine whether it was an error or not. We have at no time targeted the civilians whenever we carried out our operations and wherever they are gathered,” he maintained.

He said the military was yet to ascertain the number of persons killed in the airstrike, adding that the death of innocent person in the course of operation was rather disturbing to the military authority and the institution.

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