ICRC Operational Appeal 2017: Nigeria

Originally published
View original



  • People affected by conflict in the north-east and other violence in the Middle Belt and the south meet their urgent needs through Nigerian Red Cross Society/ICRC relief distributions, including in areas that are challenging to reach.

  • IDPs, returnees and residents strengthen their resilience to conflict and other violence with the ICRC’s assistance: support for resuming agriculture, renovating water systems in Maiduguri and elsewhere, and constructing shelters.

  • People in remote areas, particularly women and children, have better access to health services through fixed or mobile clinics backed/established by the ICRC; the weapon-wounded are treated by ICRC surgical teams in Maiduguri.

  • The authorities and weapon bearers take steps to protect healthcare workers and other civilians, including women and children, and provide people with basic services or facilitate their access to them.

  • Detainees, including those held by the army and the police, are visited by the ICRC to monitor their treatment and living conditions; ailing and malnourished inmates are treated by the authorities with support from the ICRC.

  • Children reunite with their families with the help of Movement components in the region. Relatives of missing people get legal, psychosocial and other assistance via peer-support sessions and referrals facilitated by the ICRC.


The conflict between Nigerian defence/security forces and the armed group that calls itself the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (also known as Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad or Boko Haram) continues. Cameroon, Chad and Niger are also fighting the group in border areas, notably, as part of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).

Skirmishes and bombings in Nigeria’s north-eastern states (mainly Adamawa, Borno and Yobe) have had dire humanitarian consequences. Parts of the north-east have been secured, and people have attempted to return home; some communities with urgent, unmet needs have become accessible to humanitarian actors. However, security constraints still limit access to other areas, and most people remain displaced. Reportedly, there are over 2.3 million IDPs in Nigeria – mostly in host communities – and hundreds of thousands of Nigerian refugees in neighbouring countries.

People in Nigeria’s Middle Belt states contend with communal violence due mainly to resource disputes, and people in southern Nigeria have experienced increases in crime and in violence related to resurgent militancy and the claims of Biafra secessionists. The severe economic situation exacerbates these tensions.

Nigeria plays a key role in addressing regional peace and security issues through the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).