by Alexander Smith, NBC News
Nigerian military forces on Tuesday announced the rescue of 200 girls and 93 women from Sambisa Forest — but officials don’t yet know whether the rescued captives are the specific girls taken by Boko Haram militants en masse from Chibok last year, a spokesman for the country’s president said.
“Whoever they are, the important thing is that these girls were in the custody of terrorists in the Sambisa Forests and now they are free,” Reuben Abati, chief spokesman to outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan, told NBC News.
The military operation in the country’s northeast Tuesday destroyed three terrorist camps, the military said in a statement.
The mass kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls from the Nigerian town of Chibok sparked an international outcry last April. The group Boko Haram — which roughly translated means “Western education is a sin” — has been waging a bloody war in the region in the hopes of establishing an Islamic state. Some of the girls escaped.
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