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article imageMichelle Obama expresses outrage over Nigeria girls' kidnapping

By Abdul Kuddus     May 10, 2014 in World
Lagos - First lady Michelle Obama condemned the abduction of more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls, saying she and her husband were “outraged and heartbroken" over the kidnapping.
She described the kidnapping as an "unconscionable act" carried out by a terrorist group as a part of a wider pattern of global threats and intimidation to prevent girls from pursuing education.
"What happened in Nigeria was not an isolated incident. It's a story we see every day as girls around the world risk their lives to pursue their ambitions," Michelle Obama said in the White House weekly address.
The first lady referred to the Pakistani teenage activist Malala Yousufzai, highlighting the risks that girls face while pursing education and called upon nations worldwide to make sure education becomes the birthright of every girl.
In her first solo White House weekly address, Michelle Obama stressed that education could be truly a girl's best chance for a bright future, not just for herself, but for her family and her nation.
Earlier this week, the first lady tweeted a photo of herself with a sign reading: #BringBackOurGirls.
Earlier this week, the US government offered help in search and rescue of the kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls.
Reportedly, the Obama administration is sharing intelligence with Nigerian authorities on their effort to trace the girls.
Islamist militant group Boko Haram says it carried out the attack and kidnapped the girls.
The group reportedly stormed the girls’ dormitory at the Government Girls Secondary School in the Nigerian town of Chibok and kidnapped at least 270 girls.
Later, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau released a video statement saying he planned to sell them into slavery.
Apart from attacking villages and indulging in looting, killing and burning, the group is against Western education which it believes degrades the moral values of Muslims.
“In 2010, the US designated Boko Haram a terrorist organization, amid fears that it had developed links with other militant groups, such as al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, to wage a global jihad,” BBC reported.
The kidnapping triggered international criticism, including protests and a social media campaigns against the Nigerian government’s inability to handle the situation.
Twitter message with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls has gained momentum and is being used by people to get updates on the status of the search operation.
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