Nigeria - The turbolent north
When Nigeria’s presidential election results started trickling in on April 17th, showing that the incumbent, Goodluck Jonathan, was heading for victory, youths in the country’s north started to burn buildings in protest. The election itself was hailed as an improvement on the rigged and violent polls that have kept the ruling People’s Democratic Party in power for a dozen years. But its outcome has widened old divisions in Africa’s most populous country, home to 150m people and over 250 ethnic groups.
Hundreds are now thought to have died in the post-election violence, though authoritative figures are hard to come by. A local human-rights group says that more than 500 people were killed just in Kaduna, one northern state, in the worst of the violence between April 17th and 19th. Human Rights Watch, a New York-based lobby, said that 311 bodies had been found in one mass grave alone. A heavy military presence and curfews in the worst-hit states, including Kaduna, Kano and Bauchi, have since brought an edgy calm. (...)
Human rights in Nigeria:
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