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IDP Camp Bombing As many as 170 people might have died – MSF

The Nigerian Air Force accidentally dropped bombs on the camp on Tuesday, January 17, after being informed that it was a terrorist hideout.

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Survivors look at the aftermath of the bombing by the Nigerian air force of a camp for displaced people in Rann, northeast Nigeria, on January 17, 2017 play

Survivors look at the aftermath of the bombing by the Nigerian air force of a camp for displaced people in Rann, northeast Nigeria, on January 17, 2017

(Médecins sans Frontières (MSF)/AFP/File)

Aid group, Medicine Sans Frontier (MSF) has said that up to 170 people might have died in the accidental bomb attack on the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Rann, Borno State.

The Nigerian Air Force accidentally dropped bombs on the camp on Tuesday, January 17, after being informed that it was a terrorist hideout.

MSF, also known as Doctors without Borders, made the revelation via a statement released by General Director, Bruno Jochum on Friday, January 20.

The statement reads:

“The death toll continues to rise following the horrific military attack on civilians in Rann, Nigeria, according to latest estimates by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).”

“Around 90 people were killed when a Nigerian airforce plane circled twice and dropped two bombs in the middle of the town of Rann, which hosts thousands of internally displaced people.

“At the time of the attack, an aid distribution was taking place. The majority of the victims were women and children. Outside of what MSF teams have witnessed, consistent reports from residents and community leaders say as many as 170 people were killed.

“This figure needs to be confirmed. The victims of this horrifying event deserve a transparent account of what happened and the circumstances in which this attack took place. Many of the survivors will need long-term care and support for the future.

“People had sought safety in what they thought was a protected site – instead they were bombed by those who were meant to safeguard them.”

“The tragedy in Rann too clearly illustrates the dire situation in Borno State, where extremely vulnerable people remain trapped in a cycle of daily violence between the Nigerian military and Boko Haram. This intense violence has led to the displacement of nearly three million people over the past few years, who are still in urgent need of protection and assistance.

“The population continues to pay the price of a merciless conflict, where the war between Boko Haram and Nigerian military too often disregards the safety of civilians.

“The people of Borno should be entitled to guarantees of protection and assistance. All parties to the conflict must ensure the safety of civilians, and we urge the Government of Nigeria to ensure the protection of its people.”

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Meanwhile, the Air Force has launched a probe to investigate how the accident happened.

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