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UN Coordinator Demands Explanation From Nigeria Over Illegal Search Of Humanitarian Base

Mr. Edward Kallon, the United Nations (UN) Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, has demanded clarification from the Federal Government for Friday's search carried out by security agencies on the UN humanitarian base in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State.                

The demand was contained in a statement issued on Friday by the international body. The statement quoted Mr. Kallon as expressing grave concern over the unauthorized search on the facility used as a base for UN humanitarian workers.                              

 "At circa 0500 hours today, members of the Nigerian security forces entered the UN base for humanitarian workers in Maiduguri without authorization. The security forces carried out a search of the tented camp and left the area at circa 0800 hours," said the statement.    While the UN currently does not have any information related to the unauthorized search, the statement added, Mr. Kallon will seek an explanation for its motivation.

"The humanitarian crisis in Nigeria's north-east is one of the most severe in the world today. I am extremely concerned that these actions could be detrimental to the critical work that is being carried out every day to support the most vulnerable in the region and I call upon the government to provide clarification," the statement quoted Mr. Kallon as saying.                                  

The UN added that in addition to its efforts, there are over 50 non-governmental humanitarian organisations providing support for the Nigerian government to provide relief for some of the 6.9million affected by the insurgency crisis in the North-East.Earlier on Friday, the Theatre Command of Operation Lafiya Dole, the counter-insurgency operations of the Federal Government, issued a statement saying security forces carried out searches on 30 houses, including a property said to be a UN base. The statement, signed by Lieutenant-Colonel Kingsley Samuel, said the searched facility was without designation.