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More Nigerian Women Kidnapped — Where Was The Military?

Twenty Nigerian women were kidnapped not far from where Boko Haram abducted 300 schoolgirls in April. No one has taken credit for this latest attack.
Posted at 12:10 PM, Jun 10, 2014

More women kidnapped in Nigeria and more questions over whether the military could have prevented it.

"According to eyewitnesses, the women were loaded onto vans at gunpoint and driven away to an unknown location in Borno State. Now the army in Nigeria has yet to comment on this incident, which took place Thursday." (Via CCTV)

Al Jazeera quotes an eyewitness who says in addition to taking 20 women, the gunman also kidnapped three young men who had tried to intervene.

"We are Boko Haram."

 

While no group has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping, all signs point to Islamist extremist group Boko Haram. (Via TVC

That's the same group credited with kidnapping nearly 300 schoolgirls in mid-April. This is what's left of their boarding school in Chibok — mere miles away from Thursday's kidnapping. (Via BBC, Euronews

The Wall Street Journal says this latest mass abduction exposes the military's inability to defend the region. "Despite President Goodluck Jonathan's declarations of war against Boko Haram … the country's military was nowhere to be seen during the hourslong raid."

The Nigerian government has come under increasing pressure both at home and abroad for not doing enough to stop Boko Haram's killing spree. In recent weeks, the group has terrorized and ruthlessly slaughtered hundreds of villagers.

Despite sending 20,000 troops into the region and pouring more than $6 billion into security in the nearly two months since the girls' kidnapping, the military has failed to rescue them. Complicating their efforts — Boko Haram has threatened to harm the girls if the search is not called off. (Via Channels TV

TIM COCKS, REUTERS CORRESPONDENT: "Let's not forget that it's a textbook Al-Qaeda stroke, Islamist tactic, to kill your hostages, if you think they're about to be freed." (Via PBS

But the delay in finding the girls highlights what critics say is foot-dragging on the part of the Nigerian government — that includes reports it initially turned down offers of international help in the search and ignored warnings of an attack. (Via Time, The Washington Post, BBC)

There are also allegations senior members of Nigeria's military provided assistance to Boko Haram. The military has denied those reports.