Forgiveness messaging increases willingness to accept former Boko Haram fighters returning home

Thousands of former Boko Haram militants and abductees in Nigeria left the group this summer and asked to return to their homes. If they are not allowed, they could return to fighting. A randomized evaluation in the Nigerian city where Boko Haram began—and where many of its victims now live—found that messages from a Muslim religious leader focused on ideas about forgiveness from the religion increased listeners’ willingness to accept former fighters back into the community, providing a path toward peace.

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