Hidden Crisis in Borno State

Hidden Crisis in Borno State


This article is brought to you by the Center for International Stabilization and Recovery (CISR) from issue 25.2 of The Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction available on the JMU Scholarly Commons and Issuu.com.

By Sean Sutton [ MAG, Mines Advisory Group ]

At the end of 2019, Nigeria reported a significant increase of landmine, explosive remnants of war (ERW), and improvised explosive device (IED) contamination in its states. In 2019 alone, a total of 239 known mine casualties were recorded in Nigeria. Although the exact amount of contamination in Nigeria today is unknown, the Landmine & Cluster Munition Monitor asserts that Borno is the most heavily affected state in the country. Due to mounting mine contamination and increasing pressure from non-state armed groups (NSAG), internally displaced persons (IDPs) and communities are unable to safely return to the region. 

Extensive landmine use by Boko Haram has created a state of crisis in the region and the number of casualties continues to grow. The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) reported in late 2020 that NSAG were more frequently targeting civilian populations. The conflict between NSAG and the local military has been steadily depositing explosive devices throughout the region, including improvised devices using adapted submunitions. 

The hostile situation has led to a shortage of resources for the distressed communities and a lack of humanitarian access, impeding recovery efforts. Farmer and civilian casualties continue to climb as people are displaced, unable to return to their homes for fear of their safety. 

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Published: Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 25, 2022

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