Scores of girls and young women kidnapped from a school in Nigeria are being forced to marry their Islamic extremist abductors, a civil society group reported Wednesday.
Parents say the girls are being sold into marriage to Boko Haram militants for $12, Halite Aliyu of the Borno-Yobe People’s Forum told The Associated Press. She said the parents’ information is coming from villagers in the Sambisa Forest, on Nigeria’s border with Cameroon, where Boko Haram is known to have hideouts.
“The latest reports are that they have been taken across the borders, some to Cameroon and Chad,” Aliyu said. It was not possible to immediately verify the reports. The Nigerian government needs to get international help to rescue the more than 200 missing girls kidnapped in the northeast by the Boko Haram terrorist network two weeks ago, said a federal senator for the area in northeastern Nigeria. The government must do “whatever it takes, even seeking external support to make sure these girls are released,” Sen. Ali Ndume said. “The longer it takes the dimmer the chances of finding them, the longer it takes the more traumatized the family and the abducted girls are.”
About 50 of the kidnapped girls managed to escape from the captors in the first days after their abduction, but some 220 remain missing, according to the principal of the Chibok Girls Secondary School, Asabe Kwambura. They are between 16 and 18 years old and had been recalled to the school to write a physics exam.