from EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – THERE are mixed fortunes following the release of more than 300 schoolboys kidnapped recently at a government school northern Nigeria.
An armed group, believed to be the infamous Boko Haram, had been holding the minors hostage since an attack on the Government Boys Science Secondary School in the Katsina State.
The attack that occurred last week shocked the world.
Peter Hawkins, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) representative in Nigeria, welcomed the release of some boys.
“I am relieved to hear that about 344 children are reported to have been released last (Saturday) night,” the envoy said.
“We look forward to their safe returns to their families. If any are still being held, we call on the attackers to release all children immediately.”
Hawkins said any other children still being held captive in Nigeria should also be released.
This includes more than 200 schoolgirls the Boko Haram kidnapped at a government-run boarding school in northeastern town of Chibok in 2014.
In 2018, more than 100 schoolgirls were kidnapped in another eastern town, Dapchi.
Boko Haram, the Islamist sect, claimed responsibility for those attacks.
More than 30 000 civilians have been killed the insurgency in the West African county since 2009.
– CAJ News