The border town of Bosso (Niger) this morning looked like any other town of the Sahel region: dusty streets, heavy heat, scattered shadows and goats. It is only when the local authorities call for the registration of the refugees that a crowd of about five thousands Nigerians gathers around the city hall.
When you go on the outskirts of the town you understand that those people -families, lonely teenagers and youngsters – are not only carrying pots and fabrics, gathered in haste: they also carry the story of what they saw and escaped from.
“When they see young men in traditional robes, they shoot to them on the spot. They catch many of the others and take them away, and we don’t hear from them again” says one of the young ones, describing some of the actions of the Nigerian troops, sent there to destroy Boko Haram.
There is a war in Nigeria, in the three northern states where the state of emergency has been declared. The Nigerian Federal government has decided to pin down and eradicate the terrorist group, Boko Haram. At what cost? For weeks now the Northern part of Nigeria has been cut off from the rest of the country. The state of emergency declared by President Goodluck Jonathan has allowed the army to act in full impunity, away from the eyes of the world.