October 15, 1968
Observer Team Claims No Evidence of Genocide
A team of foreign observers reported today that there was not evidence supporting the allegations of genocide in the region of Eastern Nigeria, where secessionist Biafrans are making a last stand against federal troops. The team published its report following a visit to the southern sector of the fighting front, where Nigerian troops are tightening a noose around Umuahia, the last major town in Biafran hands. The team was headed by Maj. Gen. Henry Alexander of the British army and included officers from Sweden, Canada and Poland. They also reported that refugees behind the fighting lines were mostly in good condition.
The report made two main recommendations: that “white belts” should be declared 10 miles behind the federal lines where civilians should be resettled and that the fighting zones should be declared “red belts” and all civilians excluded. That since the observer teams could not be present permanently or in all sectors at the same time, these teams should be enlarged immediately. (UPI – United Press International)