Nigeria resumes secret trial of Boko Haram suspects

Justice ministry says court sessions will remain private for security reasons

Nigeria resumes secret trial of Boko Haram suspects

World Bulletin / News Desk

The trial of at least 1,600 Boko Haram suspects resumed on Monday as courts began hearings after the country’s annual vacation.

“The trials are going on right now. But they are not open to the public because we do not want to endanger the lives of people,” Othman Salihu Isa, a spokesman for the justice minister, told Anadolu Agency.

Isa also did not name the judges handling the cases for “security reasons and because of the sensitivity of the trial”.

The justice ministry announced in a statement in September that four judges had been picked along with special prosecutors and defense attorneys to speed up the trial which begins at a military facility in central Nigeria’s Kainji town.

That statement claimed the trial of some 651 suspects being held in northeastern Maiduguri would follow as the authorities continue to review cases arising from military operations against the Boko Haram insurgency.

The trial is dogged by what Justice Minister Abubakar Malami called the poor investigation of cases, reliance on confession-based evidence, lack of forensic evidence, bickering between investigators and prosecutors in the early stages of the investigation and security fears of the counsel handling the cases.

Nigeria is battling to end the seven-year insurgency in the northeast in which tens of thousands have been killed and at least two million displaced from their homes across the Lake Chad region.

 

Last Mod: 09 Ekim 2017, 17:00
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