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Amnesty International faults Army panel report, seeks presidential probe 

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By Tunde Adetunji, Abuja
Amnesty International, Thursday, dismissed the outcome of report of the Nigerian Army Special Board of Inquiry on alleged killings of innocent people in the North East,  protesters in the South East and other forms of rights violations levelled against Nigerian Army personnel involved in internal security operations in the country.
The agency, however, called for the establishment of a Presidential Commission of Inquiry to probe the allegations.
The Director of Amnesty International Nigeria, Osai Ojigho, stated this in a statement while reacting to the summary of the Army report.
“We stand by the findings of our research and our call for an investigation that is independent, impartial and thorough; criteria that this panel clearly does not meet. We maintain that the nine senior commanders named in our report should be the subject of an effective and independent investigation.
“To this end, we welcome the panel’s recommendation that there should be a Presidential Commission of Inquiry into these allegations of horrific war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in North-East Nigeria,” the statement said.
Amnesty International asked the Federal Government to set up an independent investigation into its allegations, insisting that those suspected of committing human rights violations must be brought to book.
“President Muhammadu Buhari promised an independent investigation into our allegations of human rights violations and crimes under international law two years ago. This is a vital step and must be implemented as a matter of urgency by the government.
“Amnesty International’s priority is justice, human rights and the dignity of human life in Nigeria. We maintain that those suspected of committing human rights violations and crimes under international law on all sides of the conflict must be brought to justice in fair trials before civilian courts without recourse to the death penalty. We also urge the military to make the whole of this report public,” the statement added.

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