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World Hunt for Nigeria girls as second kidnap group freed

13:53  27 february  2021
13:53  27 february  2021 Source:   bbc.com

Talks ongoing to free Nigeria school kidnap victims

  Talks ongoing to free Nigeria school kidnap victims Nigeria is working to secure the release of more than 40 people abducted from a school, including by sending an imam into a forest to meet with the kidnappers, a local official told AFP on Friday. Kidnappers captured 42 people, including 27 schoolboys, three teachers and other relatives of school staff, officials said, in the country's latest mass abduction.Gunmen in military uniforms raided the Government Science College in Kagara, Niger state early Wednesday, killing one student and taking others away.

Police in Nigeria have launched a search and rescue operation for 317 girls kidnapped from a school in the state of Zamfara.

a bedroom with a bed and a chair in a room: The girls were reportedly taken to a nearby forest © EPA The girls were reportedly taken to a nearby forest

The operation comes as 42 people kidnapped from a boarding school in a similar incident last week in Niger state were released.

The kidnappings are carried out for ransom and are common in the north.

President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the latest kidnapping as "inhumane and totally unacceptable".

The United Nations Children Fund also condemned the abduction of the girls and called for their safe release.

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  • The town that lost its girls

The 2014 kidnap of 276 schoolgirls in the north-eastern town of Chibok by Islamist militants Boko Haram brought global attention to the scourge of raids on schools in Nigeria but the most recent attacks are suspected to be the work of criminal gangs.

Self-defence not the answer to Nigeria's kidnap crisis

  Self-defence not the answer to Nigeria's kidnap crisis The defence minister said people should at times provide their own security but it is not that easy.The Nigerian government seems to have suggested that it can no longer be relied on to keep citizens safe.

What is the latest from Zamfara?

Nigerian police said in a statement that "a co-ordinated search and rescue operation, involving the deployment of both ground and aerial assets" was under way.

Two helicopters have been deployed.

map © Provided by BBC News Map

Police also appealed for calm. Residents of the town of Jangebe, where the abduction took place, have reacted angrily, attacking vehicles that entered.

The Vanguard newspaper said that a convoy of journalists was attacked by a mob.

Friday's attack happened at 01:00 local time (midnight GMT) when a group of gunmen arrived at the Government Girls Secondary School in Jangebe.

Some reports say the girls, aged 12 to 16, have been taken to the Dangulbi forest.

Zamfara state has closed all boarding schools.

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No group has so far admitted carrying out the attack.

  • Is Boko Haram carrying out school kidnappings?

What has happened in Niger state?

A total of 42 people including 27 students, kidnapped from a boarding school in Kagara in the north-central state of Niger 10 days ago, have been freed.

An armed gang had stormed the school when the pupils were asleep. One boy was killed.

  • Nigeria gunmen raid Kagara school

The group was also taken to a nearby forest.

Niger state Governor Abubakar Sani Bello said in a tweet on Saturday: "The abducted students, staff and relatives of Government Science Collage Kagara have regained their freedom and have been received by the Niger state government."

The released group is reported to have arrived in Minna, the state capital. No further details have been released as yet.

Why are schoolchildren being abducted?

  Hunt for Nigeria girls as second kidnap group freed © BBC

Every time children are taken from their schools by armed gunmen in northern Nigeria, the kidnapping of the Chibok girls is mentioned.

By targeting schools, Nigerian kidnappers put country at risk

  By targeting schools, Nigerian kidnappers put country at risk Jihadists in northeastern Nigeria have long outraged the world with mass abductions of schoolchildren but now armed gangs in search of income are using the same tactic in other parts of the country, sparking warnings that no school is safe. More than 300 schoolgirls were snatched from dormitories by gunmen in the middle of the night in northwestern Zamfara state on Friday, in the third known mass kidnapping of students since December. UntilMore than 300 schoolgirls were snatched from dormitories by gunmen in the middle of the night in northwestern Zamfara state on Friday, in the third known mass kidnapping of students since December.

Similar raids took place before that well-publicised abduction but they received little publicity and they never involved girls.

But global attention generated by the #BringBackOurGirls campaign showed armed groups that the mass abduction of children was a sure way of applying pressure on authorities, including asking for ransom, although the authorities always deny paying.

The government does not appear to have a strategy for stopping these incidents from happening.

But two weeks ago, lawmakers from Zamfara state suggested offering amnesty to repentant kidnappers in exchange for sustainable economic opportunities.

It's a controversial strategy but one that yielded some positive results in the Niger Delta, which saw a reduction in crime after a similar amnesty programme in 2009.

The government so far says it will not negotiate with criminals.

In the meantime, schools in rural northern Nigeria are more vulnerable than they've ever been.

Shooting mars reunion of freed Nigerian schoolgirls with parents .
All the 279 Nigerian schoolgirls released by kidnappers this week were on Wednesday reunited with their parents, in an emotional event overshadowed by chaos and shooting by security forces, an AFP reporter saw. Angered by officials' insistence on a formal handover before parents could leave with their children, mobs began throwing stones at officials outside the school in the remote village of Jangebe when the girls were returned. One person wasAngered by officials' insistence on a formal handover before parents could leave with their children, mobs began throwing stones at officials outside the school in the remote village of Jangebe when the girls were returned.

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