NHRC Says Military Now Observes Rules of Engagement During Clash with Insurgents 

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Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
The National Human Rights Commission’s involvement in the fight against insurgency has impacted on the professionalism of the Nigerian military so much so that the rules of engagement with the insurgents are now being  observed by the military to avoid civilian casualties.

 The Executive Secretary of the Commission Prof. Bem Angwe, made this statement when the Regional Representative of the United Nations High Commission of Human Rights, Mr. Andrea Ori, led a team of human rights experts on a courtesy visit to the commission.

 Angwe also acknowledged the support of the UN system especially the UNDP and UNHCR which he noted had deployed monitors to the North-east and the North-central states for the purpose of monitoring human rights situation of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the area.

He also informed the UN delegation that the commission had continually engaged the federal and state governments on the need to provide entrepreneurial skills to the IDPs while facilitating their safe and voluntary return to places that are safe and habitable.

Angwe who also doubles as the Chair of the Network of National Human Rights Institutions in West Africa (NNHRI-WA) would be organizing a confab on Human Rights and Terrorism which would point the way forward as well as evolve measures to re-integrate victims of terrorism.

Towards this end, Angwe said the Executive Secretary of the sub-regional body, Mr. Saka Azimazi would give an update on the reports of human rights situation of member states before the Annual General Assembly to take place later in the year.

Earlier, the Regional Representative of United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mr. Andrea Ori commended the commission for protecting the electoral rights of Nigerians and ensuring a successful advocacy against electoral violence during the 2015 general election.
The UN envoy noted that the commission under Angwe had made giant strides towards entrenching a culture of human rights to the extent that respect for the sanctity of the electoral process has come to stay in Nigeria and urged other countries in the sub-region to borrow a leaf from this.