World

Boko Haram has killed 1,000 civilians this year, Nigerian forces torched village; rights group

  • Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan, center-left, and opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, center-right, hug and shake hands after signing a renewal of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

    Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan, center-left, and opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, center-right, hug and shake hands after signing a renewal of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)  (The Associated Press)

  • Opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, right, looks across as he and Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan, left, prepare to sign a renewal of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

    Opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, right, looks across as he and Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan, left, prepare to sign a renewal of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)  (The Associated Press)

  • Nigerian opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari walks to his vehicle after signing a joint renewal with President Goodluck Jonathan of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

    Nigerian opposition candidate Gen. Muhammadu Buhari walks to his vehicle after signing a joint renewal with President Goodluck Jonathan of their pledge to hold peaceful "free, fair, and credible" elections, at a hotel in the capital Abuja, Nigeria Thursday, March 26, 2015. Nigerians are due to go to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Saturday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)  (The Associated Press)

A leading human rights group says Nigeria-based Boko Haram has killed more than 1,000 civilians this year and forced hundreds of abducted girls and women to convert to Islam and marry fighters.

Human Rights Watch says people are desperate despite recent successes of a multinational offensive that has seized back dozens of towns from the Islamic extremists.

The New York-based group also charges Nigerian security forces torched a village and killed at least five civilians.

A report issued Thursday, based on accounts from witnesses and media, says Nigeria's government is not doing enough to protect its civilians.

Nigeria is preparing for critical presidential elections Saturday that Boko Haram is threatening to disrupt because it opposes democracy.