Boko Haram abducts women & children

In retaliation for the arrest of members’ wives and relatives, the violent Islamic sect, Boko Haram, announced on Monday that it had kidnapped some women, young girls and children.

A BBC report quoted leader of the sect, Sheikh Abubakar Shekau, to have said in a video just released that the sect was holding the hostages until relatives of members in custody were released.

“If they do not leave our wives and children, we will not leave them,” Shekau was quoted as saying. He was said to have said that anyone taken by the group could begin a new life as a “servant,” without going into detail.

The BBC report also said the video showed women and children purportedly being held.

In the video, a Kalashnikov assault rifle sits over Shekau’s right shoulder as he speaks while the background is covered with a rug. “It’s unclear when the video was shot,” the report said.

“In the video, Mr. Shekau also said the group was behind two recent attacks in the North-East, which left an estimated 240 people dead.”

Reacting to the development, Director of the Defence Information, Brig.- General Chris Olukolade, told one of our correspondents on the telephone that Boko Haram should leave innocent civilians out of its conflict with the government.

Olukolade said, “We will continue to do our jobs as enshrined in the constitution of this country. Nobody can blackmail us; they (Boko Haram) should stop this criminal conduct.”

“They should stop terrorising innocent people; we will not be blackmailed from doing our work.

“They should leave the innocent civilians out of this. The military will continue to do its work to provide security for Nigeria.”

However, there have been no cases of abduction of women and children announced by the security agencies.