Relevance of international humanitarian law to the deployment of multinational forces: A focus on north-eastern Nigeria
Since 2009, Nigeria has been faced with the challenging of combating Boko Haram insurgency. The insurgents are mainly operating in the North-eastern part of Nigeria particularly in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states. To assist the government in combating this threat to its sovereignty, there has been created a multinational joint task force, under the auspices of the African Union Peace and Security Council. The force, made up of 8700 military and civilian personnel is in place but is yet to become operational. This paper examines the relevance of international humanitarian law (IHL) to the deployment of multinational forces, focusing on the soon-to-be operational multinational joint task force to assist in North Eastern Nigeria. It discusses the origins of the multinational force, its legal basis, as well as the relevance of the IHL to its operations. It also points out some of the rules of IHL which the multinational force must comply with in spite of difficulty to do so.
Keywords: Multinational Force, Multinational Joint Task Force, Non-international Armed Conflict, Boko Haram, African Union Peace and Security Council