Obama: 80 US Troops in Chad Seeking Abducted Girls

Obama: 80 US Troops in Chad Seeking Abducted Girls

An unidentified mother cries out during a demonstration with others who have daughters among the kidnapped school girls of government secondary school Chibok, Tuesday April 29, 2014, in Abuja, Nigeria.  Two weeks after Islamic extremists stormed a remote boarding school in northeast Nigeria, more than 200 girls and young women remain missing despite a “hot pursuit” by security forces and desperate parents heading into a dangerous forest in search of their daughters. Some dozens have managed to escape their captors, jumping from the back of an open truck or escaping into the bush from a forest hideout, although the exact number of escapees is unclear. (AP Photo/ Gbemiga Olamikan)
An unidentified mother cries out during a demonstration with others who have daughters among the kidnapped school girls of government secondary school Chibok, Tuesday April 29, 2014, in Abuja, Nigeria. (AP Photo/ Gbemiga Olamikan)

 

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States has deployed 80 military personnel to Chad to help locate the nearly 300 girls kidnapped in Nigeria last month, President Barack Obama said Wednesday. Obama, in a letter to House Speaker John Boehner and the Senate, notified lawmakers about the latest steps underway to assist in the return of the abducted girls. Obama said the service members will help with intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft for missions over northern Nigeria. He says the force will stay in Chad until its support is no longer necessary. Chad shares a portion of its western border with northeastern Nigeria. The girls and young women, all from a school in northern Nigeria, were kidnapped last month by an Islamic extremist group known as Boko Haram. Dozens escaped, but the group’s leader has threatened on video to sell most of the remaining 276 schoolgirls into slavery if the government does not release detained militants. The government of Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan came under intense criticism for its initial response to the kidnappings. Since then, the international community has pledged its assistance.

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