3 UN workers, 8 others killed in Boko Haram attack

Rescued workers collect bodies following an attack by Boko Haram suicide bombers at the outskirts of Maiduguri, Nigeria, Friday

Three workers for United Nations agencies and eight others were killed in an attack by armed Boko Haram militants on a military near Nigeria’s border with Cameroon, UN officials said Friday.

The International Organization for Migration said “a large number” of Boko Haram members attacked the base in Rann, in Borno State, a day earlier with automatic weapons, rocket-propelled grenades and gun trucks.

A UN spokeswoman in Abuja, Samantha Newport, said the attack happened “after dark” outside a camp housing some 55,000 people displaced by the conflict.

“Of the aid workers that were killed, two worked for the IOM (International Organization for Migration) in camp management; and one was a medical doctor working as a third party consultant for UNICEF,” the UN children’s agency, she added.

At a UN briefing in Geneva, IOM spokesman Joel Millman said the two staffers, Ibrahim Lawan and Yawe Emmanuel, were among three humanitarian workers killed along with eight members of police and the military. The U.N.’s humanitarian aid coordinating agency, OCHA, says a third aid worker killed was a medical doctor consulting for UNICEF.

IOM Director of Operations and Emergencies Mohammed Abdiker said in a statement that the agency was “outraged and saddened” by the killings. The two IOM staffers were contractors working in a camp for 55,000 internally displaced people who have fled conflict in the region.

UN officials say the humanitarian crisis in northeastern Nigeria is one of the worst in the world, with more than 7.5 million people in need of assistance. Some 3,000 aid workers with the world body, its agencies and NGOs are providing aid to some 6.1 million people in the region.