Janez Lenarčič, Commissioner for Crisis Management, has issued the following statement:
The EU joins the humanitarian community in strongly condemning the recent killing of aid workers that were abducted in June along the Monguno-Maiduguri road in Northeast Nigeria.
The EU would like to express its condolences with the families, friends and colleagues of the five victims and our thoughts are with them.
The EU continues to appeal for the adherence to international humanitarian law and the safeguard of human rights – conflict is not an excuse to breach these rules and target humanitarian workers and civilians.
It is an extremely difficult time for the humanitarian community in Nigeria. Informal vehicle checkpoints and ambushes along the main roads in Borno State have resulted in hundreds of civilians being abducted, wounded or killed since the beginning of the year. Insecurity in conflict-affected Northeast Nigeria is severely impacting the civilian population and hindering the capacity to provide humanitarian assistance to people in need of urgent support.
Humanitarian workers have one mission – that of saving lives. At a time when humanitarian needs are at their highest in Northeast Nigeria, compounded by the coronavirus pandemic, relief workers continue to selflessly help the people in need for whom this aid is their only lifeline. Saving the lives of others should not cost lives.