Since 2009, Nigeria has been struggling to contain a combination of Tuareg separatists and militant Islamic extremists from tearing the North of the country apart and flooding the south with chaos and refuges. Since the extremist insurgency has started, Boko Haram (which means Western education is forbidden) has made it a point to kidnap girls who aren’t Muslim and/or who are in school as a way to spread the terror of their message and feelings towards women and education while simultaneously bolstering the number of prisoners they can use in exchanges and possibly finding wives for their fighters. While the capturing of the 250 girls drew international attention and spawned the #BringBackOurGirls social activism campaign (which accomplished nothing), people don’t realize that Boko Haram has continued to capture both boys and girls in their continuing fight against the Nigerian government.
On October 18, Boko Haram struck again and kidnapped 80 girls and women while also having kidnapped at least 30 boys and girls since last Wednesday (Oct. 22nd). While the older women in the group were released the following day, the keeping of the younger women and girls speaks to the likelihood that they will be sold to extremist fighters as jihadi brides and forced to marry their captors. While there is technically a cease-fire being followed by both sides, Boko Haram has launched a number of attacks in recent days that have resulted in a multi-national army fighting back and taking control of a town that the extremists had previously held. Due to Boko Haram’s seeming refusal to sign the ceasefire, Nigerian troops and soldiers from surrounding countries are going to keep attacking the terrorists in an attempt to both win the war as well as to locate all of the women, girls, and boys who have been kidnapped and forced to join to convert and join the group; the girls and women are usually sold as brides and are raped while the boys are forced to fight alongside the terrorists.
If you’d like to read more, the link is here.