From Aidoghie Paulinus, Abuja
The European Union (EU) and the French Republic, have flayed the abduction of students of the Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, Katsina State.
The EU condemned the abduction in a statement by its High Representative/Vice President, Josep Borrell, the EU Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič and the Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen.
The EU said the upsurge in violence in North West Nigeria was alarming, adding that the abduction of hundreds of children in Katsina State by Boko Haram was a despicable act of violence and cowardice.
While further saying that children should never be targets, the EU also said schools should never be transformed into battle fields.
“The EU calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all abducted children. We express our solidarity with their families, and the Nigerian people.
“Those responsible for this horrific act should be brought to justice. All efforts must continue to rescue and safely reunite the students to their families.
“As the humanitarian situation in Northwest Nigeria continues to deteriorate, the access of humanitarian workers to reach all people in need is limited. The EU calls for the respect of human rights and International Humanitarian Law,” the EU said.
The EU also said the fight against terrorism and radicalisation will remain high on the agenda of the EU-Nigeria partnership.
Earlier, the Government of France said it strongly condemned the attack on a school and the kidnapping of several hundred students claimed by Boko Haram on December 11 in Katsina State, Northern Nigeria.
The Embassy of France in Nigeria, in a message posted on its Facebook page, also condemned the attack carried out by Boko Haram in Toumour in the Diffa region of Niger, the night before the local elections of December 13, which claimed several civilians.
“France expresses solidarity with the families of the victims of these attacks. She calls for immediate and unconditional release of abducted students in Nigeria and recalls that attacks on schools constitute a serious violation of human rights.
“Officials should be identified and accountable for their actions.
“France renews its support to Nigeria, Niger and other Lake Chad countries in their efforts to fight terrorism and stabilize the region,” the statement read.