Nigeria and Boko Haram agree to ceasefire and girls' release
Nigeria’s military has issued a statement saying that the Nigerian government and Boko Haram had reached a ceasefire that will lead to the release of around 200 girls that Boko Haram had kidnapped.
Negotiations leading to the ceasefire
Boko Haram and Nigerians have been engaging in negotiations for over a month now. The talks were held in Chad with the active involvement of Chad’s President, Idriss Deby, and senior officials from Cameroon.
Though the Nigerian military and presidential aides to the Nigerian President have spoken of the ceasefire, Boko Haram has not made any comment yet. The terms of the ceasefire, include Boko Haram agreeing in principle to free the kidnapped girls.
The ceasefire will mark the end of a five year long insurgency.
Kidnapping of the girls
In April 2014, Boko Haram militants attacked a school in the remote north-eastern village of Chibok in Borno state and kidnapped approximately 270 girls. Of the 270, 57 girls managed to escape, but over 200 of the girls are still being held.
The terrorist organization was founded in 2002. The group is mostly active in Nigeria, but tends to cross over into Cameroon too. Its initial focus was on opposing Western education. However, by 2009, it has launched military operations with the objective of creating an Islamic state.
Till date, thousands have been killed and millions displaced because of the violence caused by the Boko Haram. It has also attacked police and UN headquarters in the Nigerian capital, Abuja
Boko Haram was declared a terrorist group by USA in 2013.