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NIGERIA CHIBOK GIRLS ‘SHOWN ALIVE’ IN BOKO HARAM’S “PROOF OF LIFE” VIDEO

A video released by Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram appears to show some of the schoolgirls kidnapped two years ago from the town of Chibok.
The video, apparently filmed in December, was sent to the Nigerian government and shows 15 girls in black robes identifying themselves as pupils abducted from the school.
Some of those filmed have been identified by their parents.
It is the first footage of the girls to be seen since May 2014.

The kidnapping of the 276 girls triggered the global social media campaign #BringBackOurGirls, involving US first lady Michelle Obama and a host of celebrities.
But despite their efforts, most of the girls are still missing.
Boko Haram militants attacked the government boarding school in Borno state on 14 April 2014, seizing the girls who had gone there to take exams.
The failure of Nigerian officials and the military to rescue the girls brought international condemnation and contributed to President Goodluck Jonathan’s loss in elections last year.

CNN reported that the “proof of life” video was sent in December to negotiators trying to free the girls. It shows an interview with Information Minister Lai Mohammed saying the government is reviewing and assessing the video.

Senator Shehu Sani, who has been involved in past negotiations with Boko Haram about the Chibok girls, told The Associated Press he found the video credible. Yakubu Nkeki, leader of a support group of parents of the kidnapped girls, said he briefly saw part of the CNN video, in between power blackouts frequent in Nigeria, and recognized some of the girls.

“We are all well,” one of the girls says in the video, emphasizing the “all.” There have been fears that Boko Haram’s increasing use of female children and adults to carry out suicide bombings indicate they are turning captives into weapons, including the Chibok girls.
Nigeria’s Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is due in Chibok on Thursday for the anniversary of the kidnappings, Nkeki said, complaining the issue has become politicized. He said the community is angry that their only school remains in the ruins created by Boko Haram, which firebombed buildings as they took off with the girls.

“Boko Haram has achieved its aim. They say they don’t want us to have Western education and our children don’t,” he said.

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Kevin Alemba
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