LAGOS- Manned US aircraft were flying over Nigeria today, searching for over 200 schoolgirls abducted by the Boko Haram after Abuja dismissed a prisoner-swap offer from the activists.
“We have shared commercial satellite imaging with the Nigerians and are flying manned ISR (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) assets over Nigeria with the government´s permission,” a senior US government official stated.
Boko Haram´s leader said in a new video obtained by sources on Monday that the girls, whose abduction had sparked global outrage, would alone be discharged if the government freed militant fighters from custody.
The militant leader said the female children in the video had converted to Islam and all were shown in Muslim dress, reciting the first chapter of the Koran and praying at an undisclosed location.
“State Department woman representative Jen Psaki stated US intelligence experts were “combing through every detail of the video for clues that might help ongoing efforts to procure the release of the girls.” Their disappearance has triggered global outrage, in part due to a social media campaign that has gained the backing of high-profile names adding US First Lady Michelle Obama, Pope Francis and Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai.