NEW YORK, JULY 23, 2020—The international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) strongly condemns the unacceptable killing of five humanitarian aid workers in northeast Nigeria. These types of attacks deprive people in need of humanitarian assistance, including access to clean water, food, and healthcare.
The aid workers who were killed were from Action Against Hunger, the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), International Rescue Committee, Reach International, and a security guard protecting humanitarian facilities. They were abducted last month.
“We at MSF are devastated to hear this terrible news,” said Dr. Christos Christou, international president of MSF. “We stand in solidarity and send our deepest condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of those killed in these brutal attacks.”
MSF condemns all forms of violence against humanitarian aid workers and humanitarian assistance.
“This is not the first time we have seen the deliberate targeting and execution of aid workers in Borno state,” Christou said. “These murders come on top of similar atrocities in 2019 when 12 aid workers were killed. MSF condemns, in the strongest possible terms, all violence against humanitarian aid workers.”
In northeast Nigeria where conflict has raged for more than a decade and the humanitarian crisis has been aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 10 million people are estimated to be in need of urgent assistance. It is critical that the parties to the conflict stop these attacks to ensure people in need have safe and unhindered access to urgent and lifesaving humanitarian assistance.
MSF has worked continuously in Nigeria since 1996 and currently runs projects in seven states throughout the country.