July 30, 2009
The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has condemned the ongoing violence in parts of Northern Nigeria.
MEND said this on Wednesday in a press release signed by the group's spokesperson, Jomo Gbomo.
In the release, MEND described the attacks as senseless and criticized the efforts made by the federal government to bring the violence to an end.
Fighting had broken out on Sunday in Bauchi State of northern Nigeria when members of Boko Haram, which means "Western education is a sin" in Hausa language, torched a police station killing the policemen on duty to protest the arrest of their leader, a reprisal hit latter left about 39 dead.
The violence which originated from the state has since spread to Kano, Yobe and Maiduguri states where heavy fracas between government security force and the Islamic insurgence had resulted in hundreds of death as well as wanton destruction of government institutions.
MEND, in the release, said it was not a threat to Nigeria and denied claims that it had set up a team to negotiate with the government.
"We use this opportunity to deny the statements from certain groups who we have no affiliation with that claim a team has been chosen to negotiate with the government," Mr. Gbomo was referring to the recent amnesty offer by the federal government.
According to the release, MEND leader, Henry Okah, who was recently granted amnesty by the federal government, was holding consultations with ‘various camps' in order to set up a team to convey their demands to the government.