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2.2. Individuals perceived as Boko Haram members or supporters

Last updated: February 2019

This profile refers to (perceived) Boko Haram members or supporters.

COI summary


The Nigerian Army has been accused of human rights violations in the context of the fight against Boko Haram. There are reports of extrajudicial executions, mass deaths in custody, torture, fumigation, unlawful detention and arrest and starvation of over 8 000 people by the State. In one incident in January 2017, the Air Force attacked a settlement camp for IDPs, causing the death of between 170 and 236 civilians and leaving hundreds injured. According to a senior official in the Nigerian military, the Air Force was acting on ‘faulty information’ that the area was populated by insurgents associated with Boko Haram.

The CJTF is also involved in the fight against Boko Haram. It relies on information from local residents and uses their knowledge to try to identify Boko Haram members, bringing suspects to the Nigerian security forces. There are reports of extrajudicial killings, arbitrary arrest and acts of torture by the CJTF of individuals considered to be members or sympathisers of Boko Haram.

Risk analysis

The legitimate response of the authorities to Boko Haram cannot be considered persecution. However, certain acts to which individuals under this profile could be exposed are of such severe nature that they would amount to persecution (e.g. extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests, torture).

In the case of individuals perceived as Boko Haram members or supporters, well-founded fear of persecution could, in general, be substantiated.

Nexus to a reason for persecution

Available information indicates that persecution of this profile is for reasons of (imputed) political opinion.

Exclusion considerations could be relevant to this profile (see the chapter on Exclusion).