New Telegraph

November 28, 2023

Why we won’t deploy lethal military force to rescue Kaduna train kidnap victims -Buhari

…restates govt determination to rescue remaining victims alive

…assures military hostilities against terrorists, bandits won’t stop

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that he declined from adopting the option of deploying lethal military force for the rescue of the remaining victims of the Kaduna train kidnap because of its potential collateral damage.

Buhari made this disclosure Thursday at a meeting with the representatives of the victims of the Kaduna Train abduction at the Presidential Villa.

According to a release by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, the President assured his guests that his government was doing everything within its powers to ensure the safe return of the remaining abductees.

Condoling with the families of the victims and those who lost their loved ones, the President said since the March 28 abduction, the nation had joined them to endure a period of difficulty and emotional pains.

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He intimated the representatives of the families that in the immediate aftermath of the incident several actions have been taken by government to bring succour to the affected families and to prevent a recurrence in the country.

Explaining his reasons for not deploying maximum military might for the release of the abductees, the President said: “I have been informed that at last count, there remain about 31 people in the hands of the kidnappers, and our determination is to work towards returning these 31 people to their families.

‘‘It is understandable that emotions typically run high, we have received several suggestions about the deployment of lethal military force in extracting those still being held in captivity.

“This option has indeed been considered and evaluated.

‘‘However the condition to guarantee a successful outcome and minimize potential collateral damage could not be assured and therefore that course of action had to be reluctantly discarded.

”My primary concern is to get everyone released safely and unhurt.”

The Minister of Transportation, Jaji Sambo, in his remarks, said in the first week of his resumption in the ministry, he met with the relatives of the victims of the Kaduna train attack, updating them of all the efforts the government is making to ensure safe return of their loved ones.

He described the audience with the President as a manifestation of the efforts by the government to secure the release of all captives, and proof that ‘government was not resting on its oars.

A representative of the victims of the train abduction, Alhaji Sabiu Mohammed, appealed to the Federal Government to assist the families in the release of their remaining loved ones still in captivity adding that they do not have the ransom the kidnappers were demanding.

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