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Nigeria sets death penalty for abductions

Nigeria sets death penalty for abductions

NIGERIA'S Senate passed a bill imposing jail terms of at least 15 years for paying a ransom to free someone who has been kidnapped and made abduction punishable by death in cases where victims die. Armed gangs operating mostly in northeastern and north-central states of Nigeria have for more than a decade spread terror through kidnappings for ransom, targeting students, villagers and motorists on highways. They have also killed thousands of people. Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari speaks during the 75th anniversary celebrations of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France, November 12,…
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French journalist kidnapped in Mali

French journalist kidnapped in Mali

FRENCH Foreign Affairs minister Jean-Yves Le Drian confirmed yesterday that a French journalist who disappeared last month in Mali's northern city of Gao had probably been taken hostage by Islamist militants in West Africa's arid Sahel region. Olivier Dubois this month appeared in a video appealing to authorities to do everything they can to free him from the JNIM (al Qaeda North Africa) holding him. French authorities have previously only confirmed Dubois' disappearance. "Everything leads us to believe he's the hostage of a jihadist group", Le Drian told RTL radio.
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School children abducted in Niger released

School children abducted in Niger released

GUNMEN in Nigeria on Saturday released 27 teenage boys who were kidnapped from their school last week in the northern state of Niger, while security forces continued to search for more than 300 schoolgirls abducted in a nearby state. Schools have become targets for mass kidnappings for ransom in northern Nigeria by armed groups, many of whom carry guns and ride motorcycles. On Feb. 17, 27 students, three staff and 12 members of their families were abducted by an armed gang who stormed the Government Science secondary school in the Kagara district of Niger state, overwhelming the school's security detail.…
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FACTBOX-The violence and insecurity affecting Nigeria

FACTBOX-The violence and insecurity affecting Nigeria

LIBBY GEORGE UNREST and violence are worsening across Nigeria, where gunmen in the northwest were reported to have kidnapped around 30 students from a forestry college overnight in the fourth mass school abduction since December. Growing public anger prompted President Muhammadu Buhari to replace his military high command earlier this year. Here is a summary of the violence: ARMED GANGS, NORTHWEST/NORTH-CENTRAL NIGERIA Armed gangs that rob and kidnap for ransom, commonly described as "bandits", are active across the northwest. Such groups killed more than 1,100 people in the first half of 2020 alone, according to rights group Amnesty International. In…
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‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero says he was kidnapped and blindfolded before arrest

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero says he was kidnapped and blindfolded before arrest

Paul Rusesabagina Rusesabagina, a political dissident who has lived in exile in Belgium and the United States, was arrested in August after returning to the country. At the time it was not immediately clear whether he had returned voluntarily or had been coerced. "I was kidnapped to come here," Rusesabagina said in court in the capital, Kigali, as he applied for bail. "...They tied my legs and my arms and I was blindfolded." Prosecutors denied he had been kidnapped and said due process had been followed. "No one kidnapped Paul Rusesabagina...he was detained at a legally recognised place after being…
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