81 Boko Haram Suspects Go On Public Trial In Niger
Nemesis has caught up with about 81 suspected members of cut-throat Islamic terrorists and they are now facing the tribunal in faraway Niger Republic on Thursday.
The suspects were accused of fighting for Boko Haram and they went on trial in a public court sitting.
It is one of the first of its kind after closed-door trials of suspected insurgents were criticised by human rights groups.
Those on trial in a special international court in the capital Niamey come from Niger, Nigeria and Chad and are suspected of playing a role in Boko Haram’s near decade-long bid to create a caliphate in Nigeria.
The Niamey trials follow closed-door Boko Haram trials, including in Nigeria where a court in October jailed 45 people to between three and 31 years in jail, but the government did not say what they were convicted of.
Open trials are meant to show that suspected fighters will be given due process and could also help alleviate a conflict that has been stoked at times by the mistreatment of captives.
The Niamey court will
hear 22 separate cases over the next 10 days, following the trial of nearly 300
people on similar charges last year. In all, nearly 1,000 people are expected
to come before the court.
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