Nigeria local authorities deny abducted schoolgirls released

The Nigerian army announced the release of nearly 121 schoolgirls earlier abducted by Boko Haram, but Borno state officials denied the statement

Nigeria local authorities deny abducted schoolgirls released

World Bulletin / News Desk

Authorities in Nigeria's northeast Borno state denied on Thursday a statement by the armed forces which had said most of the more than 100 schoolgirls abducted by rebels had been freed in a military rescue operation.

"As I am talking to you now, only 14 of the students have returned," an aide to Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima told Reuters, asking not to be named.

The assertion directly contradicted a statement issued late on Wednesday by national armed forces spokesman Major General Chris Olukolade in which he said only eight of the students were still missing after the military operation.

The Borno governor's aide said the 14 girls found safe so far "escaped" and were not rescued.

An uncle of two of the teenagers who were snatched on Monday by Boko Haram militants from the government secondary school at Chibok in Borno state said the search was still going on.

"Two of my nieces, Laraba and Hauwa, are still missing, ... twenty other girls from our village are missing," Isaiah Rabo told Reuters by phone from Chibok. His daughter was among those who escaped from the abductors.

There was no immediate explanation for the contradictory versions regarding the mass abduction of the schoolgirls aged between 15 and 18, which has shocked Nigeria.

UNICEF calls for release of Nigerian school girls

UNICEF, the U.N. children's agency, condemned on Wednesday the reported abduction of 129 school girls aged between 12 and 17 years old from their school in Chibok, Borno State, Nigeria Monday night and called for their immediate and unconditional release.

UNICEF Regional Director for West and Central Africa Region Manual Fontaine said on Wednesday in a press conference at the European Headquarters of U.N. in Geneva that the U.N. is taking measures to increase its number of staff in Nigeria to help prevent more similar violence from occurring again, adding that they are deeply concerned about the persistent attacks on schools in Nigeria.

Most recently, unidentified gunmen in February killed 53 children between 13 and 17 years old at the Federal Government College, Buni Yadi, Yobe State.

Last Mod: 17 Nisan 2014, 14:46
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