Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said that President Barack Obama “aided and abetted” radical Islamic terrorists by refusing to sell arms to the Nigerians under the Leahy Act, citing human rights allegations.
“Blanket application” of the Leahy Act because of “unproven allegations of human rights violations levelled against our forces” denied the country “access to appropriate strategic weapons to prosecute the war,” Buhari said in a speech at the United Institute for Peace.
The United States had blocked a number of weapons sales in Nigeria’s fight against the Boko Haram group, including sales of Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopters from Israel.
As the original manufacturer of the helicopters, the United States had veto power, which it used.
“In the face of abduction of innocent school girls … indiscriminate bombings of civilians in markets and places of worship, our forces have remained largely impotent because they do not possess the appropriate weapons and technology which they could have had, had the so-called human rights violations not been an obstacle,” Buhari said.
According to the Washington Examiner, the “so-called human rights violations” might refer to a report from Amnesty International that says the Nigerian government “sanctioned or failed to prevent” 8,000 deaths at the hands of Boko Haram. Nigeria denies the charges.
While president Buhari has made inroads against Boko Haram, he has been partially encumbered by the lack of arms.
The terrorist organization also recently announced that it would call itself the “West Africa province” of theIslamic State group now.
And, as recently as this past week, Boko Haram killed 29 people in a suicide attack.
Obama “has aided and abetted the Boko Haram terrorist group in the prosecution of its extremist ideology and hate, the indiscriminate killings and maiming of civilians, in raping of women and girls, and in their other heinous crimes,” said Buhari.
“I believe this is not the spirit of the Leahy Laws. I know the American people cannot support any group engaged in these crimes,” he added.
The American people do not. As for our president, that’s a different matter entirely.