The Islamic extremist group Boko Haram has released a video showing about 50 out of the 276 teenage girls that were kidnapped from Chibok two years ago. The video shows a Boko Haram militant speaking in front of the girls, stating that some of them have already contracted marriage with members of the group.
The soldier focused on one of the girls so she could verify her identity to the cameras. The girl was forced to send a message to the Nigerian government, demanding the release of captured Boko Haram fighters in exchange for the girls’ release. “We are not happy living here. I’m begging our parents to meet the government to release their people so that we can be released,” stated the young girl.
The militant claimed that they would murder the surviving girls if the government made any attempt of rescuing them using any other method than what they have demanded. Although the authenticity of the video has not been confirmed, the Nigerian government has not commented on it.
Boko Haram keeps causing terror in Nigeria
President Muhammadu Buhari had previously stated that Boko Haram was “technically defeated,” but it appears that terror tactics such as kidnapping and suicide bombings are much harder to circumvent as the Islamic extremist group continues to have a strong presence in the region.
Although there appears to be division in Boko Haram, as its leader Abubakar Shekau has released a statement explaining that he has not been replaced in his role, it seems that the video of the kidnapped girls was released from Shekau’s group. The other faction, known to have set themselves apart from Boko Haram, is the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).
“The parents should know that their children are still with us, some of them. And they should press on Federal Government to urgently set free our brothers in their captivity. Those they are holding in Maiduguri, Abuja and Lagos and all parts of Nigeria; they are holding our brethren. This is what we want the parents to know,” stated the Boko Haram spokesperson.
The man also claims that some of the girls were killed in recent airstrikes performed by the Nigerian government. The interviewed girl’s name is Maida Yakubu, who was originally from Chibok. She was kidnapped at her GSS boarding school by the extremist group. She confirmed that she has being held in captivity for the last two years.
The militant said that they have not held talks with government entities, which apparently disproves some of the official statements claiming that they have agreed to take part in talks for their surrender.
He claims that the group has only spoken to journalists and that they have not sent any emissary other than the selected journalists. This is perhaps a way of differentiating Boko Haram’s actions from ISWAP’s.