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Why has the Nigerian Military Failed to Recover the Abducted Girls?

People attend a demonstration calling on  government to rescue kidnapped school girls of a government secondary school Chibok, during workers day celebration in Lagos, Nigeria. Thursday, May, 1. 2014, Scores of girls and young women kidnapped from a school in Nigeria are being forced to marry their Islamic extremist abductors, a civic organization reported Wednesday. At the same time, the Boko Haram terrorist network is negotiating over the students' fate and is demanding an unspecified ransom for their release, a Borno state community leader told The Associated Press. He said the Wednesday night message from the abductors also claimed that two of the girls have died from snake bites. The message was sent to a member of a presidential committee mandated last year to mediate a ceasefire with the Islamic extremists, said the civic leader, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak about the talks. (AP Photo/ Sunday Alamba)
People attend a demonstration calling on government to rescue kidnapped school girls of a government secondary school Chibok, during workers day celebration in Lagos, Nigeria. Thursday, May, 1. 2014,  (AP Photo/ Sunday Alamba)

 

(The Washington Post) – They stood in the sun, sweating. They clutched homemade guns. Some had poisoned-tipped spears. Others wore camouflage or brandished amulets.

All of the 500 hunters, chosen by the community for their spirituality, had the same mission: Find the abducted Nigerian school girls.

“We are seasoned hunters, the bush is our culture and we have the powers that defy guns and knives,” one of the hunters, who ranged in age from 18 to 80, told the Associated Press on Sunday. “We are real men of courage, we trust in Allah for protection, but we are not afraid of Boko Haram. If government is ready to support us, then we can bring back the girls.”

But will the government help? It’s now May 20. More than a month has passed since Boko Haram militants descended upon a darkened dormitory filled with sleeping schoolgirls and abducted hundreds.

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