Nigerian Gunmen Release Hundreds of Kidnapped Schoolgirls

Gunmen released hundreds of girls who were kidnapped from a boarding school in the northwestern Nigerian state of Zamfara, the governor said in a tweet on Tuesday, bringing to an end four days of captivity that rocked Africa’s most populous nation.

Dozens of armed men abducted more than 275 girls between the ages of 11 and 17 from the Government Girls Science Secondary School in the small town of Jangebe at around 1 a.m. Friday. The abduction was the second in just over a week in Nigeria’s northwest, where a surge in armed militancy has led to a more severe breakdown of security. Kidnapping for ransom has become a lucrative industry.

“Our daughters are now safe,” said Zamfara state Gov. Bello Mattawelle, accompanied by pictures of young girls arriving at the state house wearing matching yellow headscarves. “This follows the scaling of several hurdles laid against our efforts.”

The Zamfara information commissioner said the number of girls who were kidnapped was actually 279 and the original number, 317, released by authorities was incorrect. He didn’t give a reason for the error.

Write to Joe Parkinson at [email protected]

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