This is the 7th year of Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria. The militant Islamist group extend their raids to Cameroon, Niger and Chad. All together, they are responsible for the deaths of over 17, 000 people and counting. To further their exploits the group is now increasingly employing child suicide bombers.
As they abduct the girls and women, so also do they abduct children. And just as they turn the females to suicide bombers, they do so as well to the children. As a matter of fact the insurgent militants are increasingly using these children as suicide bombers. According to UNICEF, One in every five suicide attacks since the past one year were done by children.
“Children and women accounted for 37% of suicide attacks”- UNICEF
With over 200 Chibok girls still missing, there are suspicions that these abducted children face the risk of becoming suicide bombers. Since 2009, these anti-western education militants have been devastating the northeast region of Nigeria. Report says that “the change in tactics reflects the loss of territory in Nigeria by the group.”
A few months ago, one of Boko haram’s ‘supposed’ child suicide bomber, refused to blow herself up. The teenager who was held hostage for a year said she was lured into the group.
“I had spiritual problems and so the Boko Haram told me they could help get rid of them“
The young lady said that in exchange for being suicide bombers, the militants promised them paradise. Somehow she escaped from the group.
“It wasn’t a pleasant thing to see. It wasn’t good to carry a bomb to go and kill fellow human beings… I don’t know if the other girls knew they would die when they went on the mission.“
So this gives a possible reason why they have switched to much youngechildren. It is sad the the militant group noe employ child suicide bombers. It is more dispiriting that the group can afford to include their own children as suicide bombers as well. This tactic is fast becoming a trend with ISIS as well.
Last year, in December, an 11-year old boy,Usman Modu Tella,was apprehended. He was a potential child suicide bomber. According to theNigerian Army Usman is one of the 100 wanted suspected Boko Haram terrorists.