The new incredibly sad #Bringbackourgirls news
Sobering, horrifying news out of Nigeria this morning: Gunmen from Boko Haram, the militant group that kidnapped almost 200 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok in April, seems to have struck again.
On Sunday, a raid in the northeast Nigerian village of Gumsuri by armed men suspected to be part of Boko Haram kidnapped another 100 people, including women and children, and killed 32 others. Exact numbers of missing and deceased are still being calculated in Gumsuri. The group Boko Haram, whose name translates to “Western education is sinful,” has killed and abducted thousands of people in the country in the past few years, particularly around the Cameroon border where they are stationed.
That incident in spring this year launched an enormous awareness campaign in the West under the banner of “#BringBackOurGirls,” though sadly, most of the abducted girls remain missing.
According to a Gumsuri native who spoke to Reuters, insurgents came into Gumsuri in pick-up trucks toting machine guns and AK-47s. They also burned down the medical center, houses, and shops in the town.
Back in October, the Nigerian government claimed that it had negotiated the release for the schoolgirls kidnapped in April, but Boko Haram backtracked on the deal. One of the groups’ leaders, Abubakar Shekau, released a video message taunting the international community, claiming that he had married off the girls.
Efforts to rescue the kidnapped girls have been unsuccessful. In May, President Obama dispatched 80 U.S. troops to Nigeria and neighboring Chad to try to find the hostages, but came up empty-handed. Boko Haram has killed upwards of 2,000 people this year alone.
Details of this latest mass kidnapping in Gumsuri took days to surface because the remote village is largely disconnected from mobile phone connection. Our hearts are with all the missing.