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Nigerians take part in a protest demanding for the release of secondary school girls abducted from the remote village of Chibok, in Asokoro, Abuja May 13, 2014. U.S. surveillance aircraft were flying over remote areas of northeast Nigeria as part of an in
Nigerians take part in a protest demanding for the release of secondary school girls abducted
from the remote village of Chibok, in Asokoro, Abuja May 13, 2014.
President Obama announced Wednesday that the United States has deployed 80 U.S. troops to Chad to join in the search for nearly 300 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped and held by Boko Haram, an extremist Islamist group that wants to impose sharia law on the oil-rich nation of 170 million.

In a letter to Congress, Obama said the decision was made "in furtherance of U.S. national security and foreign policy interests."

In addition to the troops, which are an expansion of U.S. resources devoted to the search, the Pentagon has deployed the Global Hawk drone and the MC-12 Liberty reconnaissance plane to hunt for the girls.

The unit will remain in Chad “until its support resolving the kidnapping is no longer required,” the [letter] said.

The Pentagon recently dispatched a team of eight experts to the Nigerian capital to help search for the more than 200 schoolgirls captured by Boko Haram, a group that holds sway over remote areas in northern Nigeria. They are working with roughly two dozen other U.S. law enforcement and intelligence personnel advising the Nigerian government on the recovery effort.

Here is the text of the letter to Congress:

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Wed May 21, 2014 at 01:16 PM PDT.

Also republished by Support the Dream Defenders, Black Kos community, and Daily Kos.

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