Boko Haram massacre is so big, survivors give up counting bodies


Man holding a sign that says: "Je suis Charlie n'oublions pas les victimes de Boko Haram"

France is still in shock after the deadly shootings in Paris which left 17 people dead.

But there has been another shocking death toll in recent days with reports of hundreds, possibly thousands, of people massacred by Boko Haram.

Even there the Paris deaths got more press than those in Nigeria, said media analyst Ethan Zuckerman.

He pointed out that Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan expressed sympathy to the French but said nothing about Baga.

Newsbeat looks at the numbers.

1 - In the last week

Two children on a dusty road and the words: "Last week's massacre in Baga was so enormous, defence groups said they gave up trying to count the bodies. One estimate puts the total number of dead at 2,000."

Muhammad Abba Gava, a spokesman for a defence group that fights Boko Haram, said they gave up on trying to count all the bodies.

"No-one could attend to the corpses and even the seriously injured ones who may have died by now," he said.

Nigeria has since said the number of people who lost their lives was no more than 150, with the defence ministry claiming it included "many of the terrorists" who had attacked the town.

Nigeria has been known to underestimate death tolls to downplay the threat of Boko Haram.

2 - Deaths in Nigeria

People standing by an explosion and words reading: "More than 2,000 people died in 2014 at the hands of Boko Haram."

3 - #BringBackOurGirls

Woman holding a photo of a girl and words reading: "273 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram in April 2014. 40 escaped. About 230 are still missing. #BringBackOurGirls"

4 - Number of Boko Haram members

Masked men with weapons and words reading: "In 2009, membership of Boko Haram was estimated at 4,000. Now it is thought to be 6,000 - 8,000."

5 - Age of bombers

Burned out car and words reading: "Boko Haram uses girls to detonate bombs. Explosives were strapped to a 10-year-old on Saturday in the city of Maiduguri. 19 people died."

6 - Displaced people

Woman and child and words reading: "Estimates suggest that as many as 1.5 million people have been displaced by the conflict in Nigeria."

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