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Procedure : 2018/2513(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-0045/2018

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 18/01/2018 - 4.1
CRE 18/01/2018 - 4.1

Votes :

PV 18/01/2018 - 6.1

Texts adopted :


PDF 285kWORD 54k
See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0045/2018

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law

pursuant to Rule 135 of the Rules of Procedure

on Nigeria (2018/2513(RSP))

Cristian Dan Preda, Francisco José Millán Mon, Inese Vaidere, Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso, Manolis Kefalogiannis, Tomáš Zdechovský, Pavel Svoboda, Ivan Štefanec, Elisabetta Gardini, Jaromír Štětina, Krzysztof Hetman, Claude Rolin, Michaela Šojdrová, Dubravka Šuica, Brian Hayes, Thomas Mann, Laima Liucija Andrikienė, Eduard Kukan, Romana Tomc, Patricija Šulin, Agnieszka Kozłowska-Rajewicz, Francis Zammit Dimech, Bogdan Brunon Wenta, David McAllister, Adam Szejnfeld, Roberta Metsola, Milan Zver, Eva Maydell, Csaba Sógor, Ivana Maletić, Giovanni La Via, Tunne Kelam, Joachim Zeller, Sandra Kalniete, Lars Adaktusson, Andrey Kovatchev, Marijana Petir, Jiří Pospíšil, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Ramona Nicole Mănescu, Deirdre Clune on behalf of the PPE Group
NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.

European Parliament resolution on Nigeria (2018/2513(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

– having regard to its previous resolutions on Nigeria,

–  having regard to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights of 1981, ratified by Nigeria on 22 June 1983,

–  having regard to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in particular its provisions on the protection of freedom of religion in Chapter IV – Right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion,

-having regard to the Council conclusions on Nigeria of 12 May 2014, and of 9 February 2015,


–  having regard to the Council decision to add Boko Haram to the EU list of designated terrorist organisations, which entered into force on 29 May 2014,

-having regard to the statement by the HR/VP Federica Mogherini on the release of girls kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria of 7 May 2017,


–  having regard to the UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination based on Religion and Belief of 1981,

–  having regard to the second revision of the Cotonou Agreement 2007-2013, ratified by Nigeria on 27 September 2010,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

-having regard to Rule 135 of its Rules of Procedure,


A.whereas Nigeria is Africa’s most populous country and is home to the region’s largest Christian population;

B.whereas Nigeria's 186 million population is almost evenly split between Muslims and Christians;

C.whereas an estimated 30 million Christians live in northern Nigeria, forming the largest religious minority in the predominantly Muslim region;

D.whereas peace and stability in northern Nigeria have been threatened by the continuing attacks, murders and kidnappings of the Islamist group Boko Haram since 2009;

E.whereas over 20’000 people have been killed and more than 2 million displaced since the attacks started by Boko Haram;

F.whereas in April 2014 Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls from their school in Chibok, northern Nigeria; of which some have since been reunited with their families, but more than 100 are still being held and their whereabouts are unknown;

G.whereas numerous kidnappings of clergy and nuns have taken place in the past year, such as the abduction of 6 nuns belonging to the congregation of the Eucharistic hart of Jesus that were kidnapped in Iguoriakhi, 13 November 2017;

H.whereas over 14 persons were killed, and many other wounded, in Omoku, as they were returning from the church service in the early hours of New year’s eve;

I.whereas the NGO Open Doors in their 2018 Report on Persecution of Christians ranked Nigeria as the 14th country in the world where persecution is most severe; whereas according to the same report two thirds of the 3000 Christians killed around the world in the period from November 2016 to October 2017 have been killed in Nigeria, which underlines the worrying situation of this community in the country;

J.whereas sectarian violence between predominately Muslim herders and predominately Christian farmers have seen a worrying increase in the past year;

K.whereas the ICC has stated that there is a reasonable basis to believe that crimes against humanity under Article 7 of the Statute have been committed in Nigeria by Boko Haram, including murder and persecution;

L.whereas Nigeria has a complex legal system, which combines common, customary and religious law and several tiers of government, which creates a challenging environment for the proper enforcement of human rights;

M.whereas accountability, justice, the rule of law and the fight against impunity constitute essential elements underpinning peace and conflict resolution, reconciliation and reconstruction efforts;

N.whereas Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission has announced that presidential and national assembly elections will be held on February 16, 2019;

O.whereas under Article 8 of the Cotonu Agreement, the EU engages in regular political dialogue with Nigeria on human rights and democratic principles, including ethnic, religious and racial discrimination;



1.Deplores the ongoing violence and attacks in Northern Nigeria, which have targeted Christian communities;

2.Strongly condemns the increase in violence against Christians in Nigeria, including the targeting of religious institutions and worshippers; further condemns the recent murder of at least 48 Christians in villages across Plateau State during a nine day killing spree by Muslim Fulani herdsmen;

3.Calls upon the Nigerian Government to increase its efforts to protect the Christian community and bring the violence to a stop; underlines that more efforts are needed from the authorities in order to defends Nigerians’ right to worship freely;

4.Condemns the attack in Omoku on Christians returning from church services that took place on new year’s eve;

5.Extends its condolences to the families of the victims of the ongoing violence;

6.Notes that Boko Haram has attacked Muslim, Christian, and other faiths without distinction;

7.Notes that the Nigerian military has recaptured territory from Boko Haram and arrested some of its members, but that the government’s nonmilitary efforts to stop Boko Haram remain nascent;

8.Urges the Buhari government to defend its citizens from terrorism, but insists that such actions must be conducted in full accordance with the respect for human rights and the rule of law;

9.Reminds, however, that Government’s actions undertaken against Boko Haram and other terrorist organisations should not lead to further fuelling of the violence; calls in this respect for a reform of the Nigerian state security forces, including police, and conducting investigations against those who are responsible for any human rights violations including extrajudicial killings, torture, arbitrary arrests, and extortion-related abuses;

10.Urges the Nigerian Government to address the root causes of the violence by ensuring equal rights to all citizens and no-discrimination legislation;

11.Urges the Nigerian authorities to strengthen measures to tackle corruption, and stresses that the failure to do so will mean more years of poverty, inequality, reputational damage, and reduced external investment, as well as undermining the life opportunities of its citizens; reminds that corruption lead to dissatisfaction with public institutions and decreased legitimacy of the government in the eyes of the citizens,

12.Calls for improving efficiency and independence of Nigeria’s judiciary system as a mean of effective use of criminal justice to combat violence, terrorism and corruption;

13.Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the European External Action Service, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the parliaments and governments of the Member States, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Chairman of the African Union, the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, the Pan-African Parliament and representatives of ECOWAS.


Last updated: 16 January 2018Legal notice