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Terrorists Threaten New Attack on Plateau Community, UN Demands Probe

Nigeria's Middle Belt Forum says invaders sent a letter to Pushit village, warning of an imminent assault

by Victor Adetimilehin

The residents of Pushit village in the Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau State, Nigeria, are living in fear after receiving a letter from terrorists who threatened to launch a fresh attack on their community on Friday.


According to the Middle Belt Forum (MBF), a group that advocates for the rights of ethnic minorities in central Nigeria, the letter stated that the attackers would force the villagers to run in the streets with chicken and Christmas rice in their hands.


The MBF said the letter was the latest in a series of warnings that preceded the Christmas Eve massacre that killed 195 people in 17 villages across Plateau State. Based on a report by Punch, the group accused the security agencies of failing to prevent or respond to the attacks, which also displaced over 10,000 people.


UN Calls for Investigation


The United Nations has condemned the attacks and called for a thorough investigation and accountability. In a statement on Wednesday, the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, expressed his condolences to the families of the victims and urged the authorities to ensure the protection of civilians.


Edward Kallon expressed deep sadness and outrage over the news of violent attacks on communities in Plateau State. He stated that attacks on villages, health facilities, and schools are unacceptable and must stop immediately.


He also called for urgent humanitarian assistance to the affected communities, saying that most of them were in dire need of food, water, shelter, and medical care.


Military Denies Collusion

The Nigerian military has denied any collusion with the terrorists or negligence in securing the state. In a statement on Tuesday, the spokesman of Operation Safe Haven, a joint security task force in Plateau State, Major Ishaku Takwa, said the troops were doing their best to restore peace and stability in the area.


He said the military had deployed more personnel and equipment to the affected local government areas and had intensified patrols and intelligence gathering. He also appealed to the public to cooperate with the security agencies and report any suspicious movements or activities.


Plateau State, which lies in the middle belt region of Nigeria, has witnessed recurrent clashes between predominantly Muslim Fulani herdsmen and mostly Christian farmers over land, water, and grazing rights. The violence has also been fueled by ethnic, religious, and political tensions.


The International Crisis Group reports that violence in the state has killed more than 8,000 people since 2001 and displaced hundreds of thousands. The group said the conflict had also undermined the state’s economy and social cohesion.


Despite the grim situation, some residents of Plateau State have not given up hope for peace and reconciliation. One of them is Joshua Bukat, a villager from Pushit, who said he was praying for divine intervention to avert the threatened attack.

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