Abducted girls’ home town recaptured from Boko Haram says Nigerian army

Chibok girls, Children in conflicts

The Nigerian army says it has driven out Boko Haram militants who had captured the home town of the abducted Nigerian schoolgirls.

It said that last night it had “effectively flushed out” the terrorists who stormed into Chibok two days before – and that “subsequent mopping up” was ongoing.

The official Nigerian armed forces Twitter page added: “Troops continue pursuit of fleeing terrorists and arrest of the wounded. Normalcy is restored. #CHIBOK is Secured.”

The BBC said there were reports that many Boko Haram fighters had been killed as the army hit back, with dozens of military vehicles heading into the town accompanied by members of a local vigilante force.

But it added that Chibok residents said jihadists were still in nearby villages and the area was not yet safe.

The capture of Chibok by Boko Haram, who rode into the town shooting from pickup trucks and motorbikes, was a massive security blow to the northeastern state of Borno. Chibok became known globally after gunmen kidnapped more than 270 girls from the Government Girls Secondary School in April.

Many escaped but 219 are still missing. Boko Haram denied recently it had reached a truce with the Nigerian government which would involve freeing the girls.

The takeover of Chibok followed another suspected Boko Haram attack in the northeastern town of Potiskum. At least 47 students died when a suicide bomber dressed in school clothes caused a massive explosion at the Government Comprehensive Senior Science Secondary School in Yobe State. 

On November 6, it was anounced that 2400 students from three states hit hardest by Boko Haram's terrorist activities are to be the first enrolled in Nigeria's Safe Schools Initiative.

Children in conflicts and emergencies is one of the 100-day themes of the #EducationCountdown. You can read more about the campaign here.

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