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Nigeria says half of government food aid never reached victims of Boko Haram

Sunday 18-06-2017 - 05:00 PM
News Agencies
Photo Credit: AP
Photo Credit: AP
Lagos (Nigeria) - At least half of Nigerian government food aid sent northeast for hungry people driven from their homes by Boko Haram has been "diverted" and never reached them, a government official said.
Some 1.5 million people are on the brink of famine in the northeast, where the militant group has killed more than 20,000 people and forced 2.7 million to flee during its eight-year uprising to create an Islamic caliphate.
Boko Haram controlled an area of the northeast around the size of Belgium in early 2015 but has since been pushed out of most of the territory by Nigeria's army and troops from neighboring countries.
But the Islamists continue to carry out attacks in the northeast and neighboring Cameroon and Niger.
Boko Haram killed 14 people in bombings and shootings in the northeastern city of Maiduguri on June 7, in a large-scale attack quelled by the army after several hours.
A U.N. official said this month the World Food Program had scaled back its emergency plans in the northeast because of lack of funds, now aiming to supply food to 1.4 million people instead of the 1.8 million previously intended.
The U.N. says it needs $1.05 billion this year to deal with the crisis in northeast Nigeria - which, along with Somalia and South Sudan, is one of three humanitarian emergencies unfolding in Africa - but has only received about a quarter of that sum.

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