NPR

Herders Vs. Farmers: A Deadly Year In Nigeria

Deadly clashes in the country's Middle Belt have skyrocketed — and a new Amnesty International report says the government is exacerbating the crisis.
Sale Tambaya, a cattle herder in central Nigeria, grazes his cows. After his home state criminalized open grazing in November 2017, he and his family fled with their livestock to a neighboring state where grazing is allowed. Two of his sons died on the journey. Source: Tim McDonnell for NPR

Deadly conflicts between farmers and cattle herders in central Nigeria over land and natural resources reached a high point in 2018, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

In 2018, more than 2,000 people were killed in such conflicts, the report found. That's more than the previous two years combined, and hundreds more than were killed by the terrorist group Boko Haram. The death toll this year, the report found, was exacerbated by the government's failure to keep the peace and investigate and prosecute the attackers.

Overall, the report — which details three years of clashes — paints a picture of a conflict in which both farmers and

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