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  • Human Rights Research Center

A Call to Action: Nigeria's Alleged Forced Abortion Campaign

February 10, 2023

Photo: Soldiers march during the inauguration of Nigerian President Mohammadu Buhari on May 29, 2015. The head of Nigeria’s army has ordered all officers to declare their assets in a bid to improve transparency. [Image credit: PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES]

Cited article by Lauren Aarons, Akila Radhakrishnan, and Osai Ojigho, Foreign Policy

HRRC echoes the concerns raised by reports of forced abortions and massacres of children by Nigeria's military during the height of the Boko Haram conflict. The government must take action and thoroughly investigate these alleged, heinous crimes.

Article Summary

Multiple reports detail forced terminations of 10,000 women and girls who were rescued and/or returned from Boko Haram-controlled regions. Additional reports claim the military carried out mass killings of children, supporting the accusations of a systematic campaign to target the "bloodline" during the Boko Haram conflict. The military allegedly targeted women and girls during this period, but this claim has been rejected by Nigerian authorities.

Between 2009 and 2018, over 20 forms of inquiries were conducted to investigate the allegations, however, none of them have addressed the concerns or led to reparations. Despite the numerous reports, the issue of forced abortions have not been publicized widely, nor has there been a formal investigation into the possible crimes against humanity. Many women's rights and humanitarian organizations are calling for a full investigation by the Nigerian federal government.


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