Middle Belt violence eclipses Boko Haram – CFR
The Council on Foreign Relations, CFR, says that sectarian violence in the Middle Belt of Nigeria has eclipsed the Boko Haram conflict.
Basing its analysis on the Nigeria Security Tracker data, NST, the CFR notes that violence has almost doubled since 2017.
“The NST documented 1,949 deaths through October 2018, compared to 1,041 sectarian-related deaths in all of 2017,” it stated on its website.
It further stressed that violence is about even with Boko Haram, in terms of the number of conflict-related victims.
“Deaths related to the Boko Haram conflict through October 2018 are roughly 1,900” as against 1, 949 of sectarian violence.
The NST identifies sectarian conflict as acts of violence that occur between distinct identity-based groups (or are framed as such in the Nigerian press).
Examples typically include conflict that is described as occurring between “communities,” religious groups, or between named groups, such as “Fulani herders” and “Berom farmers.”
The Council observed that the escalation in violence through 2018 comes because of a relative "lull" in 2017, but states that “the worst overall year since 2011 is 2014, which parallels 2018.”
According to the CFR, Agatu in Benue, and Barkin Ladi in Plateau are clearly the most affected by sectarian violence.