On Tuesday, residents of Warabe in Nigeria’s northeast say suspected Boko Haram Islamists kidnapped eight more girls from the region. The leader of the extremist group last month had said that the group had abducted more than 200 schoolgirls.
According to the residents, the assailants were looking for girls in every household in an attack in Warabe late on Sunday, adding that eight girls, aged 12 to 15, were forcefully taken away. They added that the assailants surprisingly did not kill anyone, suggesting that abduction was the only motive of the attack. The gunmen, which locals suspect are members of the Boko Haram, reportedly torched parts of the village as well.
According to sources, security forces did not provide any protection to residents of the village, and that gunmen can pick out the girls they want to, with nobody to stop them. The targeted area is 100 miles from Maiduguri, the capital of Borno, where Boko Haram was created over a decade ago. The leader of the Boko Haram Abubakar Shekau said that his fighters on April 14 had abducted more than 200 girls from Chibok, and in a video threatened to sell them as slaves.
Later on Tuesday, the US offered to send experts to Nigeria to assist in the search for the kidnapped girls. US Secretary of State John Kerry called Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan and made the offer, which the Nigerian President welcomed, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.
In the statement, Psaki said that the US “is ready to send a team to Nigeria to discuss how the United States can best support” efforts to locate the girls, adding that the details are yet to be worked out. She also said that the US government offered to establish a co-ordination cell with the help of US military personnel, hostage situation experts and law enforcement officials at the US embassy in Abuja. The spokeswoman added that Obama “has asked us and the secretary to do everything we can to help the Nigerian government find and free all the girls.”