File picture: Tyrone Siu/REUTERS

JOHANNESBURG - The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) says that an upsurge in violence in north-east Nigeria has displaced over 59,000 people in the past three months.

The migration agency warned from Geneva, Switzerland that the displacement had continued amid the “increased sophistication” of the attackers.

Islamist militants, specifically Boko Haram, have been primarily responsible for the decade-long humanitarian crisis in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states which has spilled over into the Lake Chad region.

“Since November, we’ve seen 59,200 displaced,” said IOM Nigeria’s Chief of Mission Frantz Celestin, adding that the scale of displacement had not been witnessed over the last two years.

According to Celestin in the past few months non-state armed groups have shown increased sophistication in the increasing number of attacks they have carried out, successfully taking over a number of towns in the states.

And it is the civilians who are bearing the brunt of the violence which has been marked by the violation of humanitarian law and gross human rights abuses.

Since the start of the crisis, more than 27,000 people have been killed in the three north-eastern states, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha), and thousands of women and girls have been abducted.

African News Agency (ANA)