Hague ‘Frustrated’ By Speed Of Nigeria girls Rescue

Foreign Secretary William Hague has revealed the UK offered assistance to help find more than 200 abducted schoolgirls in Nigeria three weeks ago. Militants from the Islamist group Boko Haram kidnapped at least 276 youngsters from a boarding school in the village of Chibok in Borno state, north Nigeria, on April 14. President Goodluck Jonathan has been under fire over his handling of the armed attack and has faced accusations of being slow to respond by families of the kidnapped girls. Mr Hague has told Sky News: “Nearly three weeks ago I offered assistance to the Nigerian government

“I strongly encouraged the Nigerians to improve their capability to deal with these things in the future, Britain can really help with that. “It is a desperate situation for the girls involved, it just shows the nature of this terrorist organisation Boko Haram. “It’s difficult of course because this is primarily a matter for Nigeria and Britain can’t just walk in there… and do as we like. “It’s very frustrating when the world can’t act to deal with these things promptly because the trail goes cold of course after several weeks.”

US President Barack Obama has pledged to do “everything we can” to help rescue the youngsters, after 11 more girls aged 12 to 15 were taken from the northeastern village of Warabe on Tuesday by armed gunmen. He described the situation as “heartbreaking” and said the kidnapping could be “the extent that helps to mobilise the entire international community to finally do something against this horrendous organisation”. “We’re going to do everything we can to provide assistance to them,” he said. “In the short term our goal is obviously to help the international community, and the Nigerian government, as a team to do everything we can to recover these young ladies.” The US is sending military personnel and FBI officials with expertise in hostage negotiations. Officials have raised fears the girls may have already been smuggled into neighbouring countries including Chad and Cameroon. On Wednesday, Nigeria Police announced a 50m Nigerian naira (£182,000) reward for credible information leading to the location and rescue of the female students. Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau has appeared in a video threatening to sell the girls “on the market”

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