The Guardian reported on Thursday that a teenage girl refused a suicide mission given to her by the extremist group Boko Haram. The girl had been held captive for months by Boko Haram and was strapped with a bomb vest and sent with two other girls to blow themselves up at a refugee camp. The teen girl who refused the mission tore off her vest as soon as she was out of sight of her captors. She tried to talk the two other girls out of going through with the mission, but they carried out the plan, killing themselves and 58 other people at the Dikwa refugee camp in Nigeria. In the video above, it says the girl refused the mission because she recognized family members among the refugees in the camp.
The bombing, which happened on Tuesday morning, was reported on Wednesday by the Guardian. It was reported that 78 other people were treated for wounds following the double bombings. The Dikwa camp houses about 50,000 refugees who have been driven from their homes by Boko Haram, according to the Guardian. Dikwa is 55 miles northeast of Maiduguri, which is the biggest city in that region and the birthplace of Boko Haram.
— Nigeria Newsdesk (@NigeriaNewsdesk) February 11, 2016
The teenage girl was picked up by local security forces and gave a tearful account of her ordeal. The girl told the security forces that “she was scared because she knew she would kill people.” She was also afraid of going against Boko Haram’s orders, but also told the security forces that she refused to carry out the mission because she was afraid she would have killed her own father, who was in the camp. She also said she could not talk her companions out of going through with the suicide mission.
The girl was able to prove her story when she led the soldiers to the unexploded vest. According to Algoni Lawan, a spokesman for the Ngala local government, said the young girl was among thousands who have been held captive for months by the extremist group. The girl is still in custody and has given officials information about other bombings that are planned by Boko Haram. This information has helped to increase security at the camp, according to Satomi Ahmed, who is the chairman of the Borno State Emergency Management Agency.
The U.S. condemned the bombings. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the U.S. “remained committed to assisting those affected by the conflict and it supported efforts to provide greater protection for civilians and the regional fight against terrorism.”
Dikwa Bombing Update: US condemns suicide attack: The comments were contained in a statement released by the U… https://t.co/9Pfy7cOrHR
— Flamingolatayo (@flamingolatayo) February 11, 2016
An article, published by Watchtower Online about the teenage girl refusing to carry out the mission, said that the BBC reported that Boko Haram was designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. in 2013. Boko Haram believes in a version of Islam that doesn’t allow Muslims to participate in Western ways of life, including voting and secular education. Boko Haram has attacked numerous schools in Nigeria and has kidnapped over 2,000 children, according to Amnesty International.
The suicide bombings have only proven fears that captives are being captured in order to use them as weapons, by strapping them with bombs and ordering them to blow themselves up in populated places. Some bombs have been detonated remotely by Boko Haram, giving the suicide bombers no chance to escape.
https://t.co/NpOEMcEFVu latest Boko Haram bombing at Dikwa camp shows urgent need to curtail supply of explosives
— AOAV (@AOAV) February 12, 2016
The Khaleej Times said that the UAE has “strongly condemned the suicide attack perpetrated by women from the Boko Haram terrorist group in the Dikwa Camp for internally displaced persons (IDP). A statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation confirmed that these criminal acts targeting innocent people “contravene all humanitarian values, ethics and principles.”
“The UAE stands in solidarity with Nigeria in its fight against terrorist groups.”
It is not known if the teenage girl’s father or other family members were among the 58 people killed in Tueday’s suicide bombings of the Dikwa camp.
[Photo by AP Photo/Jossy Ola]