Boko Haram terror group has reportedly released 21 Chibok girls out of over 200 that were kidnapped in Chibok in Borno state, over two years ago. The release follows negotiations between the Nigerian government and Boko Haram as brokered by the Swiss government and Red Cross.
Presidential spokesman Garba Shehu, said in a statement:
“It is confirmed that 21 of the missing Chibok girls have been released and are in the custody of the department of state services”.
“The release of the girls … is an outcome of negotiations between the administration and the Boko Haram brokered by the International Red Cross and the Swiss government”.
“The negotiations will continue.”
“Malam Lawal wants the girls to have some rest, with all of them very tired coming out of the process before he hands them over to the Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo.”
It’s understood that the girls were exchanged for four Boko Haram prisoners in Banki in northeast Nigeria. According to Al Jazeera’s Ahmed Idris:
“For some time now there has been some negotiations between the Nigerian government and Boko Haram”.
“Remember a few months ago, leader of the Boko Haram faction that seems to be holding the girls said that they can only release these girls if the Nigerian government releases some of its commanders being held in prison across Nigeria.”
It’s uncertain as at now how the exact terms of negotiations between the Nigerian government and Boko Haram that led to the release of the 21 Chibok girls. However, according to CNN, no Boko Haram commander was released.
It is confirmed that 21 of the missing Chibok Girls have been released and are in the custody of the Department of State Services, DSS.
— Garba Shehu (@GarShehu) October 13, 2016