chibok schoolgirls boko haram nigeria
The mother of a missing Chibok girl on a march with other women calling for their daughters to be brought back homeReuters/Akintunde Akinleye

The Nigerian government has dismissed allegations that a would-be suicide bomber arrested in Cameroon is one of the 219 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram terrorists in Nigeria in 2014. The girl was arrested along with a female accomplice by local defence volunteers in the village of Limani.

Parents of the abducted schoolgirls were to travel to Cameroon to verify the child suicide bomber's claim. However, a senior official told the BBC the girl was not one of the missing students, who were kidnapped as they were attending evening school in Chibok, a village in the restive Borno state, in April 2014.

The mass-abduction stirred international outrage and shed light on the deadly insurgency of Boko Haram that, until then, had remained under-reported.

Boko Haram primarily carries out attacks in northern Nigeria and northern Cameroon. The group is renowned for kidnapping civilians, mainly women and children, and forcing them to carry out suicide bombing missions in crowded areas.

Earlier this year, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered a fresh investigation into the kidnapping of the 219 girls. The president approved the new probe after meeting some parents of the missing girls as well as members of the Bring Back Our Girls movement, which had organised a march in the federal capital of Abuja.

Buhari also said he was ready to negotiate with the terrorists for the release of the Chibok girls. However, some analysts have pointed out that negotiations will unlikely occur after Boko Haram allied with the Islamic State (Isis/Daesh).

Nigeria is leading a regional offensive with 8,700 troops from Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon and Benin lined up against the terrorists. Although Buhari declared a technical victory over the fight against the insurgents in December, Boko Haram has been carrying out scattered attacks across north-eastern Nigeria and neighbouring countries.


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Nigeria: Governments must tackle root causes of terrorism or Boko Haram 'will simply regroup in another place'IBTimes UK