If you are a parent…imagine this.
Your daughter goes to school in the morning and never comes home. You call the school and they inform you that she is not there, but has been kidnapped along with over 200 other girls. “Kidnapped from school?” Yes .. and it gets worse, your daughter may have been sold and married off to an extremist.
That exact scenario is what happened in Nigeria over two weeks ago, and the abducted girls still are not home. Now many Nigerians are seeking international assistance via social media to aid with the return of the girls. (See Video Below)
The Boko Haram militants, who abducted the children ages 12 to 17, two weeks ago, are demanding an unspecified ransom from Borno state officials, a community leader told the Associated Press.
“Some of them have been married off to insurgents. A medieval kind of slavery. You go and capture women and then sell them off,” community elder Pogu Bitrus of Chibok, the town where the girls were abducted, told the BBC Hausa Service.
..parents say the girls are being sold into marriage to Boko Haram militants. The students are being paid 2,000 naira ($12) to marry the fighters, Halite Aliyu of the Borno-Yobe People’s Forum told The Associated Press. She said the parents’ information about mass weddings is coming from villagers in the Sambisa Forest, on Nigeria’s border with Cameroon, where Boko Haram is known to have hideouts.
On April 14, 234 school girls were abducted from the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok in Northern Nigeria by the Islamist armed group Boko Haram.
Boko Haram, which is opposed to any form of western education, has waged a brutal insurgency destabilizing different states in the northern part of the country at various points since 2009 with bombs, attacks on schools and the killings of thousands of individuals. Amnesty estimates that 2,300 people have died as a result of the armed conflict since 2010, with 1,500 being killed between January and March of 2014 alone.
Two weeks after the kidnapping, the Nigerian government has yet to communicate a plan or take action, even as reports of the girls being sold into sexual slavery or forced marriage are popping up on numerous news sites in and outside of the country.
On Thursday, the mothers and other family members of the kidnapped girls marched on the nation’s capital Abuja demanding action.
The girls must be released and the rights of all children of Nigeria to safely pursue an education, free from violence must be protected along with rights of all of the people living within the country.
“We want our girls to come home alive — not in body bags,”
Nigerians have harnessed social media to protest, trending under the hashtag
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