Refugee Camps in Nigeria ‘Turning into Death Traps’
The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) warned that attacks on displacement camps in northeast Nigeria are on the rise.
At least 20 people were killed by suicide bombers in a Nigerian camp on Aug. 15, following a string of recent attacks. The NRC said there were 190 “security incidents involving civilians” in July – more than May and June combined.
Boko Haram militants appear to be stepping up attacks on “soft targets” amid an intensifying military offensive, the group said, warning that insecurity was hampering the humanitarian response in a region at risk of famine.
Millions of Nigerians have been displaced by the years-long insurgency in the country’s northeast. “Camps sheltering innocent families fleeing war should be places of refuge. But instead they are turning into death traps,” said the NRC’s Ernest Mutanga. “Armed groups in this conflict are pushing people from one hell into another.”
Spain Rescues 600 People at Sea
In one of the busiest days on the western Mediterranean this year, the Spanish coastguard rescued more than 600 people sailing from Morocco in 24 hours.
“We haven’t had days like that in quite some time. But it isn’t very big for the region,” said Joel Millman of the International Organization for Migration.
More than 9,000 people have reached Spain by boat so far this year, more than during all of 2016. Yet the rising numbers still pale in comparison to the busy route to Italy, where 97,000 people have arrived this year.
Austria, Bulgaria Send Troops to Keep Out Migrants
Austria plans to send 70 soldiers to its border with Italy in an attempt to prevent refugees and migrants crossing from the country. Local Italian authorities called the deployment, which Austria had been threatening for weeks, “surprising and unjustified.”
Bulgaria also announced plans to deploy 600 soldiers to its border with Turkey to prevent refugees and migrants entering.
“We cannot allow illegal migrants to come to Europe in large numbers,” Bulgarian defense minister Krasimir Karakachanov told Die Welt. “We should deploy Nato or European Union forces in Italy and Greece and defend the external borders of the E.U. by force of arms.”
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