A group of schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria by terror group Boko Haram were released and returned to their hometown of Dapchi, the Nigerian government announced on Wednesday.
Boko Haram militants abducted 110 girls from the Government Girls Science and Technical College in northeast Nigeria in late February. It was not clear how many of the girls had returned.
Presidential spokesman Garba Shehu told CNN that the released girls were being taken to safety. “I can confirm that the Dapchi girls have been released but I do not know how many they are right now. The details are sketchy for now.”
The secretary of the school’s parents’ association, Kachalla Bukar, said the girls were seen entering Dapchi in the morning. He said he saw around 50 girls.
“The girls said Boko Haram dropped them about 20 km into Dapchi town and told them to find their way,” he said. “I saw about 50 of them but I haven’t seen Aisha, my daughter … parents are rejoicing here, but we can see they have suffered.”
Parents were heading to the town’s Secretariat for a head count and confirmation of numbers, Bukar said.
The girls were taken from their school on February 19 by a group of militants who had attacked the town of Dapchi.
The kidnapping raised parallels with the abduction of the Chibok girls, who were taken from their school in neighbouring Borno state in April 2014. Some of those girls remain in captivity.