Nigeria schoolgirls to be released ” by Tuesday “

Posted: October 19, 2014 in World News
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Presidential source quoted as saying everything is being done to gain freedom of female students
held by Boko Haram . Nigeria aims to secure the release of 200 women
and girls abducted by the armed group Boko Haram by Tuesday, a man described as a ” senior source at the presidency ” has been quoted as saying .

The man , who would not be named , told the Reuters news agency on Saturday that the government was ” working hard to meet its own part of the agreement so that the release of the abductees can by effected either on Monday or latest Tuesday”.

The head of Nigeria’ s military , air chief marshal Alex Badeh, announced on Friday that authorities had reached a deal with Boko Haram for a ceasefire.

The truce would enable the release of the women and girls kidnapped while taking exams in a secondary school from the remote northeastern town of Chibok in April.

Officials at the presidency and the military did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Boko Haram , which conveys messages in videotaped speeches by a man claiming to be its
leader, Abubakar Shekau , has also not yet commented on the ceasefire.

Nigeria’s military has previously claimed that both Shekau and men posing as him have been killed
in operations , but security analysts have disputed this – casting doubt on the identity of the man in the videos.

Some Nigerians are likely to greet claims of a ceasefire with scepticism after five years of
violence, especially after suspected Boko Haram fighters were accused of launching a deadly attack on five villages on Saturday.

Since the girls’ abduction, Nigeria’ s military has twice claimed to have rescued some or all of the girls, only to back-track hours later.

Several rounds of negotiations with Boko Haram have been attempted in recent years but they have never achieved a peace deal, partly because the group has several different factions .

The group, whose name translates roughly as ” Western education is sinful” has killed thousands of people in its struggle to carve an Islamic state out of religiously mixed Nigeria.

Source: Al Jazeera

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