The United Nations warned Islamist Boko Haram militants on Tuesday that there was no statute of limitations if they carried out their leader’s threat to sell more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped last month.
Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said in a video released on Monday that Allah (God) had told him to sell the girls taken by his fighters from a secondary school in the village of Chibok, in northeastern Borno state, on April 14.
“We warn the perpetrators that there is an absolute prohibition against slavery and sexual slavery in international law. These can under certain circumstances constitute crimes against humanity,” U.N. human rights spokesman Rupert Colville told a news briefing in Geneva.
“That means anyone responsible can be arrested, charged, prosecuted, and jailed at any time in the future. So just because they think they are safe now, they won’t necessarily be in two years, five years or 10 years time,” he said.