Two Nigerian women abducted as school girls by a jihadi militant group nine years ago have been rescued, the West African Nation’s military said. One of the women has a child aged one and the other has given birth to a child after her release from captivity. They were rescued in April by the nation’s military and reunited with their families in the northeastern Borno state according to Major General Ibrahim Ali, who leads the Nigerian extremist violence experienced in the northeastern region for decades.
The Kidnapping Ordeal
Hauwa Malta and Esther Marcus were among the 276 girls who were abducted from the dreaded terrorist group operating in the West African nation called Boko Haram from their Government secondary school in the village of Chibok. The Boko Haram fighters stormed the school nine years ago while both captured women were appearing for their examinations. They were forcibly married to extremists while in captivity. Both the girls were married three times as one husband after the other was killed in clashes with Nigerian military. Hauwa was about eight months and two weeks pregnant during her rescue and delivered a bouncing baby boy on April 28, 2023, while undergoing thorough medical examination with her baby, Fatima.
Returning Back Home
The return of the girls was an indication of both happiness and sadness for the Chibok community. “It has made the memories fresh of their parents that their children are still missing,” said Hasan Chibok one of the local leaders of the community. Several girls have returned back home after escaping the Sambisa Forest, a known hiding place for the extremists. Most of them who have returned had babies after being forced into marriage or after losing hope that they would ever regain their freedom, the parents and the freed girls have said.
All About Boko Haram
Boko Haram is a terrorist militant group that operates in northern Nigeria that has killed thousands of people and displaced more than 3million people. The concentration of most of the extremist places are in Yobe, Kano, Bauchi, Kaduna and Borni in particular. The meaning of the word Boko Haram means “Western Education is Forbidden” and is group was founded in 2002. The group also calls itself “Jaamatu Liddawati Wal Jihad “meaning “People Committed to Propagation of Prophet’s Teachings and Jihad. The group’s initial objective was to uproot corruption and injustice in Nigeria, which it blamed on Western Influences and strictly impose the Islamic Law known to the world as Sharia.
Since the abduction in 2014, Boko Haram has grown in influence. Most of its members now operate as a more brutal faction backed by the IS (Islamic State) group. More than 35,000 people are dead and two million people have been displaced by the extremist violence in Nigeria, according to UN Development Program. In 2015, the group pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and took the name Islamic State (or State’s) West African Province (ISWAP, also known as Islamic State in West Africa, or ISWA).