WASHINGTON, DC—Representative Eliot L. Engel, the leading Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement on the recent streak of attacks by Boko Haram in Nigeria:
“I’m appalled by the violence committed by Boko Haram over the last week. They took over the town of Baga, in northeastern Nigeria, and proceeded on what appears to be their deadliest rampage of killing yet: as many as 2,000 civilians ruthlessly killed in and around Baga. They killed not only military personnel, but civilians, women, and children, and they destroyed everything they could. In addition, over the weekend, Boko Haram used young women to carry out two separate suicide attacks in the city of Maiguguri.
“The pace and viciousness of Boko Haram's attacks has not abated since nearly 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped last spring. Indeed, it has gotten worse. They must be stopped and their brutal tactics put to an end. I urge the Nigerian authorities, as well as partner countries in the region, to step up their response to this terrorism. The weak resistance Boko Haram faces in northeastern Nigeria will only fuel its ambitions to drive further into the country and the broader region.
“There should be no place in the world for organizations like this, and the people of northeastern Nigeria should not be forced to live under the kind of terror that has overshadowed their daily lives for years. With national elections only a month away, the need for better security is all the more urgent.”