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Darlene Superville of The Associated Press reports First lady Michelle Obama calls for return of Nigerian girls.

The first lady says on Twitter that, quote, “our prayers are with the missing Nigerian girls and their families.” She also says “it’s time to bring back our girls.”

She packaged her tweet with a photo of herself in the White House holding a white piece of paper with the message “#Bring Back Our Girls” written in black, capital letters.

The tweet was signed “-mo,” indicating that she sent it herself.

In #BringBackOurGirls focuses world's eyes on Nigeria's mass kidnapping Sam Jones, and Emma Howard of The Guardian note the Twitter hashtag has been used more than 1 million times.

Three weeks after 257 girls were snatched from their school in Chibok, a fortnight after #BringBackOurGirls first appeared on Twitter, and a day after Barack Obama described the kidnapping as both heart-breaking and outrageous, the eyes of the world are finally and firmly fixed on events in the remote reaches of north-eastern Nigeria.

The hashtag, which started trending in Nigeria two weeks ago, has now been tweeted more than one million times. It was first used on 23 April at the opening ceremony for a Unesco event honouring the Nigerian city of Port Harcourt as the 2014 World Book Capital City. A Nigerian lawyer in Abuja, Ibrahim M Abdullahi, tweeted the call in a speech by Dr Oby Ezekwesili, vice-president of the World Bank for Africa to "Bring Back the Girls!"

Some of the images posted on the Wear Red Facebook site.
The campaign has reignited the debate over the value of online campaigning or "slacktivism" as it is called by its critics. The hashtag has been used by different organisations to expose the story further online. Amnesty International and Unicef have backed the campaign, as have politicians and celebrities, including Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, Wyclef Jean and Chris Brown. Actors Sean Penn, Ashton Kutcher, Justin Timberlake and Bradley Cooper have thrown their weight behind a parallel hashtag: #RealMenDontBuyGirls.

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First Lady Michelle Obama says it best,“our prayers are with the missing Nigerian girls and their families. “It’s time to bring back our girls.”

1:58 AM PT: Here's the latest news that the girls may be in the Evil Forest, where one of the kidnapped girls escaped from.

Nigerian Girls may be held in country's 'Evil Forest' reports one girl who escaped from truck

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