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Nigerian soldiers accused of raping women who fled Boko Haram insurgency

The human rights watchdog says the troops sometimes demanded sex in exchange for food at refugee camps.

FILE: Nigerian army destroy Boko Haram terrorists camps in Alagarno and Sambas forests. Picture: Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman/Nigerian army public relations

PRETORIA – Amnesty International has accused Nigerian soldiers of raping women and girls who fled the insurgency by militant Islamist group Boko Haram.

The human rights watchdog says the troops sometimes demanded sex in exchange for food at refugee camps.

Amnesty International says Nigerian troops separated women from their husbands and raped them.

It adds that thousands of people have also starved to death in the camps in north-eastern Nigeria since 2015.

Nigeria's military has dismissed the allegations as malicious and false.

The military has repeatedly been accused of carrying out atrocities.

During the Obama administration, the US refused to sell weapons to Nigeria, citing concerns about the military's human rights record.

The Trump administration, on the other hand, has decided to press ahead with the sale of military aircraft and weapons, which Nigeria sees as vital to defeat the insurgents.