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UNICEF convoy attacked in Nigeria's northeast, aid deliveries suspended

UNICEF convoy attacked in Nigeria's northeast, aid deliveries suspended

Nigeria

The United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) has announced that they have temporarily suspended aid delivery in Nigeria’s northeast after its aid convoy was attacked by unknown assailants on Thursday.

‘‘Today (July 28) unknown assailants attacked a humanitarian convoy that included staff from UNICEF, UNFPA, and IOM.  The convoy was traveling from Bama to Maiduguri in Borno State, Nigeria, returning from delivering desperately needed humanitarian assistance,’‘ a UNICEF statement read.

The UN agency further disclosed that aside an employee and an International Organization for Migration (IOM) contractor who were injured in the attack and are being treated at a local hospital, all other members of the convoy are safe.

This was not only an attack on humanitarian workers. It is an attack on the people who most need the assistance and aid that these workers were bringing.

The convoy was in a remote area of northeastern Nigeria, where protracted conflict has caused extreme suffering and has triggered a severe malnutrition crisis.

‘‘This was not only an attack on humanitarian workers.  It is an attack on the people who most need the assistance and aid that these workers were bringing,’‘ the statement bemoaned.

The United Nations’s resumption of humanitarian assistance the statement clarified, was subject to a review of the security situation in the area.

Insurgent group Boko Haram have been staging attacks in the far northeastern state of Borno with the view of establishing a caliphate. In the wake of heavy military onslaught since last year, they have resorted to hitting soft targets and also ambushing troops.

It is however unclear who were responsible for the attack on the aid convoy and the Nigerian army who are largely in charge of security in the state have yet to respond to this latest attack.