By OBINNA EZUGWU
The United Nations has warned that the continuing attack on its aid workers in the North East will affect its ability to provide humanitarian assistance to those in need in the region.
The body which stated this in a statement by its Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon following an attack on its helicopter in Damask, Borno State on June 2, asked President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government to “swiftly bring perpetrators to justice.”
The attack on the helicopter which was carried out by suspected Boko Haram terrorists, led to the death of two persons including a five-year-old child.
“I deplore that a UN Humanitarian Air Service helicopter was hit by bullets during the attack. No aid workers were on board at the time and crew members are all safe. My thoughts are also with the crew and I commend them for piloting the chopper back to safety during this critical situation,” Kallon said in the statement entitled ‘Statement on Attack in Damasak, Damage to Aid Helicopter’ and issued on Saturday.
“The attack and damage to the helicopter severely affect the ability of aid actors to provide urgently needed assistance to vulnerable people in remote areas across Borno State.
“I strongly condemn any attack against civilians, humanitarian assets or aid workers and call on all armed parties to respect international humanitarian law and international human rights law, and ensure the protection of civilians, humanitarian property and personnel.
“I call on the Nigerian authorities to reinforce the safety and security of all humanitarian workers.
“I welcome the Government commitment to investigate the attack and swiftly bring to justice the perpetrators.
“I extend my sincere condolences to the families of the civilians who lost their lives in the attack and wish a prompt recovery to those injured.”