60 females, 31 boys abducted in Nigeria
FILE- In Wednesday, May 14, 2014 file photo, people attend a vigil to mark one month since the girls of a government secondary school in Chibok were kidnapped, in Abuja, Nigeria. Islamic extremists have abducted 60 more girls and women and 31 boys from villages in northeast Nigeria, witnesses said Tuesday, June 24, Security forces denied the kidnappings. Nigerias government and military have attracted international censure for their slow response to the abductions of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped April 15.(AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, File)
FILE - In this Monday, May 19, 2014 file photo, Martha Mark, the mother of kidnapped school girl Monica Mark, cries as she display her photo in the family house, in Chibok, Nigeria. Islamic extremists have abducted 60 more girls and women and 31 boys from villages in northeast Nigeria, witnesses said Tuesday. Security forces denied the kidnappings. Nigeria's government and military have attracted widespread criticism for their slow response to the abductions of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped April 15 (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba,File)
Extremists have abducted 60 more girls and women and 31 boys in weekend attacks on villages in northeast Nigeria, witnesses said yesterday, another sign of the Nigerian military’s failure to curb an Islamic uprising.
Some married women were taken along with their children who range in age from 3 to 15, said witnesses.
A local official confirmed the abductions but security forces denied them. Nigeria’s government and military have been widely criticized for their slow response to the abductions of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped April 15.
There was no way to safely and independently confirm the report from Kummabza, 150 kilometers from Maiduguri, capital of Borno state and headquarters of a military state of emergency that has failed to curtail near-daily attacks by Boko Haram fighters.
Kummabza resident Aji Khalil said yesterday the abductions took place Saturday in an attack in which four villagers were killed. Khalil is a member of one of the vigilante groups that have had some success in repelling Boko Haram attacks with primitive weapons.
A senior councilor from the village’s Damboa local government told the Associated Press that abductions had occurred but insisted on anonymity because he was not authorized to give information to reporters. He said elderly survivors of the attack had walked some 15 miles to the relative safety of other villages.
The new kidnappings show that international efforts to coordinate security along Nigeria’s border with Cameroon have stalled, said Jacob Zenn, author of a book about Boko Haram. Sightings of groups of girls assumed to be among those kidnapped in April have come in from the neighboring countries of Chad, Niger and Cameroon, he said. Boko Haram’s kidnapping experts appear to have set up headquarters in Cameroon, he said.
“This latest kidnapping highlights the continued need for the Nigerian military, its neighbors and the international community to prevent Boko Haram from taking advantage of the border region,” Zenn, an analyst for the Jamestown Foundation, said in a telephone interview.
Asked about the Nigerian government reaction, he said “It does seem like the government is overwhelmed because Boko Haram is showing that it is not only capable of dominating the border region but also carrying out major attacks in northern cities in Nigeria.”