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#BringBackOurGirls

More than 200 girls were abducted from their school on 14 April by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Even though the abduction occurred almost a month ago, the media coverage has been limited. However, the social media campaign, #BringBackOurGirls, has brought global attention to the abduction in Nigeria’s north.

Gathering at Union Square in New York City to rally for the release of the kidnapped girls. Photo by Michael Fleshman

Gathering at Union Square in New York City to rally for the release of the kidnapped girls. Photo by Michael Fleshman

The motive of the abduction is clear as the groups name, Boko Haram, loosely translates to “Western education is forbidden”. The group initially wanted to make sure the girls were not going to school and would instead marry them off.

However, Boko Haram’s demands have now changed, as they today released a video where the leader Abubakar Shekau demanded that all militants must be freed from prison before he would let the girls go. Many commentators have seen this as a good sign, that the group is changing its demands and is more willing to negotiate could work in favor of the girls’ release.

Several politicians and celebrities have voiced their opinion and demanded the release of the 276 girls captured. Among them, the United States’ first lady, Michelle Obama.

 

Nigeria’s former vice-president (1999-2007), Atiku Abubakar

 

 *UPDATES WILL FOLLOW*