Updated: March 5, 2021
At least 104 of the 110 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria on February 19 have been released, the government said on Wednesday. The schoolgirls, aged 11 to 19 were kidnapped in the northern state of Yobe.
A previous article was published when the number of freed girls was 76. But the Minister of Information, Mr. Lai Mohammed, later provided an update, saying 106 abducted persons, including 104 Dapchi schoolgirls were freed on Wednesday. The other two persons included a boy and girl.
The mass kidnap came almost four years after close to 300 schoolgirls were abducted by Boko Haram in Chibok in 2014, triggering global outrage and condemnation and giving the West African terrorists the publicity they so longed for.
Belongings of Dapchi schoolgirls after Boko Haram struck on February 19 and kidnapped at least 110 of them
The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr. Lai Mohammed, said the girls were released around 3 a.m. today through “back-channel efforts and with the help of some friends of the country”.
”For the release to work, the government had a clear understanding that violence and confrontation would not be the way out as it could endanger the lives of the girls, hence a non-violent approach was the preferred option.
”Within the period when the girls were being brought back, operational pause was observed in certain areas to ensure free passage and also that lives were not lost,” Mohammed said.
He said the number of the freed girls would be updated after the remaining ones have been documented, especially because the girls were not handed over to anyone but dropped off in Dapchi.
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