Nigeria’s emergency agency said Thursday it has sent relief items to its fleeing nationals in nearby Niger following an ongoing military assault to crush an Islamist insurgency in the northeast.
“Further to the humanitarian response of the federal government to communities affected by the security challenges in the northeast zone of Nigeria, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has deployed relief assistance to the displaced Nigerians that fled into the nearby Republic of Niger,” the agency said.
NEMA said the relief items, including food and medical items, would ease the pressure brought on local resources of the host communities by the refugees. It said 126 Nigerians had fled to Niger since last month when Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan imposed a state of emergency on three states – Adamawa, Borno and Yobe — hard-hit by the Boko Haram insurgency.
Thousands of Nigerian refugees have also fled to Cameroon since the conflict.
The Boko Haram conflict is estimated to have cost 3,600 lives since 2009, including killings by the security services.