Boko Haram Returns Kidnapped Nigerian School Girls

But issues a terrifying warning

Last month, 110 girls in Dapchi, Nigeria, were snatched from their boarding school in an attack from Islamic militant group Boko Haram.

The Government Girls Science and Technical School was attacked on February 19, with residents witnessing militants in 12 trucks with mounted machine guns driving onto the campus.

Now, a month on, Nigeria’s government has confirmed that 100 of the 110 girls have been released by their kidnappers, CNN reports.

According to witnesses, the extremist group drove the students back to Dapchi in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

“The only thing they asked for was that they should be the ones to drop them off. They didn’t want to hand them over to any third party. Nothing was given in exchange for them,” Information Minister Lai Mohammed told journalists, CNN reports.

Kachalla Bukar, the father of 14-year-old Aisha who was among the freed, said that five of the girls held captive had died. Reports that one Christian girl is still being held have not yet been confirmed.

Boko haram
Hassana Mohammed, 13, who scaled a fence to escape an alleged Boko Haram attack on her Government Girls Science and Technical College, stands outside her home in Dapchi, Nigeria, on February 22, 2018. (Credit: Getty)

Freed student Khadija Grema is reported as saying: “We were freed because we are Muslim girls and they didn’t want us to suffer. That is why they released us”.

Meanwhile, resident Ba’ana Musa said the fighters issued a terrifying declaration before leaving. 

He said the men warned: “Don’t take your girls to that school again if you don’t want us to kidnap them again”.

Four years ago, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls in Chibok. To this day, about 100 students remain missing, with fears they have been forced to marry their captors.

The name Boko Haram translates as “western education is forbidden”; in the past, the Nigerian government has claimed that the militant jihadist group had been defeated.

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