Go after Boko Haram, IMN, others - Group queries US watch list on Nigeria

Go after Boko Haram, IMN, others - Group queries US watch list on Nigeria

- A coalition has condemned the recent remark by the US government which placed Nigeria as a nation which religious tolerance

- The coalition called on the US government to focus on going after organisations that are allegedly showcasing activities that can be said to be extreme

- CATE urged the US to desist from making unsubstantiated statements that are highly misleading to the international community

The Coalition Against Terrorism and Extremism (CATE) has faulted the recent report by the United States of America which placed Nigeria under a special watch list of countries that lack religious tolerance.

CATE while reacting to the recent remarks on Nigerian government's tolerance to religion by the US government urged the United States of America to go after members of Boko Haram and the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, IMN, that are guilty of extremism in the country.

According to the group, such assertion is insensitive and an affront to the efforts of the relevant authorities in Nigeria towards protecting the rights and privileges of the various religious groups and associations in the country.

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The national coordinator of CATE, Gabriel Onoja, in a statement called on the US to desist from making unsubstantiated statements that are highly misleading to the international community.

Onoja said the coalition is alarmed by the statement credited to the US Secretary of State, Michael Pompeo.

He said CATE views such statements as insensitive and an affront to the efforts of the relevant authorities in Nigeria towards protecting the rights and privileges of the various religious groups and associations in the country.

He also said Pompeo's remark is a sad commentary against Nigeria as a nation.

Onoja said: "As it is common knowledge, the IMN, over the years in Nigeria through their activities, has brought sorrow and blood to innocent Nigerians in Zaria and other parts of Northern Nigeria. This much was also evident in the attempt on the life of the Chief of Army Staff in Nigeria by the IMN."

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"The CATE wishes to state that it would have been grossly irresponsible of the relevant authorities in Nigeria should such violent actions be allowed to thrive, which has resulted in untold hardship on innocent Nigerians going about their regular businesses," Onoja said.

Onoja added that a good example of such groups to be delisted is the Boko Haram terrorist group that has been engaged in a violent campaign since 2009 in north east Nigeria that has seen to the death and displacement of over two million Nigerians.

"At this point, the Coalition Against Terrorism and Extremism wishes to state that the culprits are the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, and the Boko Haram Terrorist groups are indeed responsible for religious intolerance and extremism in Nigeria," Onoja added.

Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the Federal Government has accused the US government if sowing seeds of discord in Nigeria.

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The Federal government through the minister of information, culture and tourism, Lai Mohammed, rejected the designation of Nigeria as a country that engages in or tolerates violations of religious violations by the US.

Mohammed said the tag by the US government against Nigeria is iniquitous and stems from an orchestrated narrative that has long been discredited.

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