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Please begin with an informative title:

Here are links and a few selected paragraphs from four articles to provide you with a quick update of the situation in Nigeria with respect to the approximately 274 girls and young women kidnapped by Boco Haram.

Aminu Abu Bakr of CNN reports encouraging news that Nigerian villagers fight off attacks by Boko Haram, killing more than 200 of the them and captturing their arms and vehicles.

Hundreds of Boko Haram fighters stormed the villages of Menari, Tsangayari and Garawa in the ethnic Shuwa-dominated Kalabalge District on Tuesday. Boko Haram -- the group responsible for the kidnapping of nearly 300 schoolgirls from the same region -- was met with stiff resistance as locals put up a fierce fight, witnesses said. ...

In the three villages attacked Tuesday, gunmen arrived in dozens of all-terrain vans, armored tanks and motorcycles, but villagers quickly mobilized and engaged the attackers in a prolonged battle. ...

"At Tsangayari and Garawa, they met a big surprise as residents engaged them in a fierce battle in which over 200 of the Boko Haram fighters were killed. More than 150 were killed in Tsangayari," Ahunna said.

Someone with the initials E.W. at the Economist pens a note that the The odds are bad.

Even if the army knew who they were looking for, the odds of finding them are low. Boko Haram, the terrorist organisation that claimed responsibility for the attack, has been kidnapping girls for years, often for sale as slaves. In the month it took the government to cobble together its pitiful response, many of the most recent victims will have been disbursed throughout the Sambisa forest, an inaccessible scrubland forty times the size of London, or taken over the border into Cameroon and Chad.

Foreign experts are assisting with intelligence and surveillance, but Nigerian soldiers, led by corrupt generals, are poorly armed, demoralised and lack proper training.

Eric Schmitt and Brian Knowlton of The New York Times writes U.S. Officials Question Ability of Nigeria to Rescue Hostages.


WASHINGTON — Obama administration officials on Thursday questioned whether the Nigerian military is able to rescue, even with international help, more than 260 schoolgirls abducted last month, giving impetus to a social media campaign calling for the United States to do more to free the hostages.

That campaign is supported by some members of Congress, but has made the Pentagon increasingly uneasy. Military leaders worry that they might be ordered to send in commandos to undertake a mission they regard as unacceptably risky.

“At this point, we’re not actively considering the deployment of U.S. forces to participate in a combined rescue mission,” the White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday. ... “We’re now looking at a military force that’s, quite frankly, becoming afraid to even engage,” said Alice Friend, the Pentagon’s principal director for African affairs. “The Nigerian military has the same challenges with corruption that every other institution in Nigeria does. Much of the funding that goes to the Nigerian military is skimmed off the top, if you will.”

Top American military officers also express concern that the extraordinary finding and execution of Osama bin Laden by Seal Team 6 has raised public expectations of combat search and rescue operations which are not always possible to so smoothly execute in reality.  

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Harriet Sherwood and Judith Soal of The Guardian reports that Nigeria's Goodluck Jonathan cancels visit to kidnapped girls' town.


The Nigerian president has cancelled a visit to the northern town from where more than 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped last month, as the US said the rescue mission was proving tough.

Goodluck Jonathan had been preparing to make his first visit to Chibok since the mass abductions were confirmed. He has been criticised for a slow response to the crisis and for failing to visit the girls' home town.

No reason was given for the cancellation, but security is likely to have been a major concern. The area is a stronghold of Boko Haram, the Islamic militant group that snatched the girls from a school on 14 April. Insurgents killed at least four soldiers in an ambush on Monday.

Relatives in Chibok were angry at the cancellation, saying they had no confidence that the government was doing everything possible to find the missing girls.

I hope this update and these links provide you with an overview of some of the recent developments related to the kidnapping of the poor girls and young women in Nigeria.

Our sympathies, prayers and/or best wishes go out to these girls, young women, their families and all Nigerians who are suffering during this terrible situation.

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