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May 16, 2014

Abductions seen as just one factor in coming Nigeria election

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan’s last-minute decision to cancel his first visit to the village where Islamist rebels abducted more than 200 schoolgirls has sharpened criticism of his handling of the crisis.

Yet the government’s performance since last month’s kidnappings is unlikely to prove decisive for Nigeria’s polarized electorate if Jonathan decides to stand for re-election next February, analysts and voters said on Friday.

May 15, 2014

Hunt for abducted Nigerian girls ‘unlikely to have happy ending’

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigeria’s hunt for more than 200 abducted schoolgirls is not all that it seems. In public, an international operation is gathering pace while behind the scenes, officials say it is unlikely to deliver the success that global opinion demands.

The United States and Britain are helping Nigerian forces in the effort to liberate the girls taken from their school in Borno state a month ago by Boko Haram Islamist militants.

May 12, 2014

Nigeria’s Boko Haram offers to swap kidnapped girls for prisoners

ABUJA (Reuters) – The leader of the Nigerian Islamist rebel group Boko Haram has said he will release more than 200 schoolgirls abducted by his fighters last month in exchange for prisoners, according to a video seen by Agence France-Presse on Monday.

Around 100 girls wearing full veils and praying are shown in an undisclosed location in the 17-minute video in which Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau speaks, according to the French news agency.

May 11, 2014

Nigeria president optimistic over finding abducted schoolgirls

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said on Sunday international military and intelligence assistance made him optimistic about finding 200 schoolgirls abducted last month by Islamic militants in an attack condemned globally.

Israel became the latest country to offer help to Nigeria since April 14 when militants from Boko Haram stormed a secondary school in the northeastern village of Chibok and seized 276 girls who were taking exams. Some managed to escape but around 200 remain missing.

May 11, 2014

Nigerian army posts two divisions to hunt for missing girls

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigeria’s army has posted two divisions to hunt for 200 schoolgirls abducted last month by Islamist rebels in an attack condemned globally, including by U.S. first lady Michelle Obama on Saturday.

The soldiers are stationed in the border region close to Chad, Cameroon and Niger to work with other security agencies, said General Chris Olukolade, spokesman for the Defense Headquarters.

May 10, 2014

Nigerian president believes kidnapped girls still in the country

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said on Friday he believed 200 schoolgirls abducted by Islamist militants last month in an attack that has stirred global outrage are still in his country and have not been moved to neighboring Cameroon.

As condemnation of the abductions spread, Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti, the top religious authority in the birthplace of Islam, said Boko Haram rebels who conducted the abductions had “set up to smear the image of Islam”.

May 9, 2014

President says believes kidnapped girls still in Nigeria

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said on Friday he believed 200 schoolgirls abducted by Islamist militants last month in an attack that has stirred global outrage are still in his country and have not been moved to neighboring Cameroon.

Jonathan’s government has been criticized for its slow response to the hostage crisis since the abductions by Boko Haram militants and it is the first time he has said where he thinks the girls are being held.

May 8, 2014

Standard Bank has no immediate plans for Nigerian acquisition

ABUJA, May 8 (Reuters) – Africa’s biggest lender Standard
Bank aims to take advantage of opportunities in Nigeria
by expanding its existing operations and has no immediate
acquisition plans, its group chief executive told Reuters.

Sim Tshabalala also said on Thursday that the South
African-based bank had not bid for Enterprise Bank, one of three
banks held by state-owned Asset Management Corporation of
Nigeria (AMCON).

May 8, 2014

Nigeria’s president at WEF pledges to free kidnapped girls

ABUJA, May 8 (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck
Jonathan pledged on Thursday to find more than 200 schoolgirls
abducted by Islamist rebels, as the hostage crisis overshadowed
his opening address to a major conference designed to showcase
investment opportunities in Africa’s biggest economy.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) being hosted in
the capital Abuja, Jonathan thanked foreign nations including
the United States, Britain, France and China for their support
in trying to rescue the girls, who were kidnapped from a
secondary school on April 14 by Boko Haram.

May 8, 2014

Nigeria’s president pledges to free schoolgirls, end ‘terrorism’

ABUJA (Reuters) – Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan pledged on Thursday to find more than 200 schoolgirls abducted by Islamist rebels, saying their rescue would mark “the beginning of the end of terrorism” in the country.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) being hosted in the capital Abuja, Jonathan thanked foreign nations including the United States, Britain, France and China for their support in trying to rescue the girls, who were kidnapped from a secondary school on April 14.