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Nigerian bishop: kidnapped schoolgirls may be freed, but all children remain at risk

April 20, 2016

A Nigerian Catholic bishop has expressed optimism about the prospect for freeing the 200 schoolgirls who were abducted by Boko Haram in 2014.

Bishop Matthew Kukah of Sokoto noted that a recent video proves that "the girls are still alive." However he voiced his concern that "political intrigues" have complicated the effort to secure their release. 

Bishop Kukha, who is visiting the US, said that the kidnapping of the Nigerian girls illustrates a broader problem. "Our children remain at great risk in Nigeria," he said; "especially the girls, who are often married off at young ages as reluctant brides." He said that especially in northern Nigeria, where Islam predominates, girls as young as 8 or 9 years old are often forced into marriages. 

 
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