Nigerian failings

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Amnesty International has claimed that the Nigerian government knew beforehand about the “raid to kidnap girls”, (your report, 10 May). Does this mean the Nigerian government is unable, or unwilling, to take police or military action? If so it is understandable why the United States, China, France and the UK are becoming involved.

As Joyce McMillan (Perspective, 9 May) alluded to, there is in Nigeria an “economic system associated with western power”. This system is based on oil and Nigeria is a substantial contributor to global supplies. Surely, not only is there a moral dimension to the US and the others’ intervention but also significant economic interests? Oil workers have been killed and millions of barrels of oil lost to crime and corruption.

However, the main interest of China and the West is a secure supply of oil. Arguably, humanitarian intervention and political and economic interests coincide in what former US president George W Bush might have called a “failed state”.

Ellis Thorpe

Old Chapel Walk

Inverurie, Aberdeenshire

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