Daily US Times: More than 300 schoolgirls from a school in north-western Nigeria have been kidnapped by unidentified gunmen.
Police say they believe the schoolgirls were taken to a forest after being kidnapped from their boarding school in Jangebe, Zamfara state, on Friday morning.
It is the latest mass kidnapping of school students in recent weeks. Armed groups often seize schoolchildren for ransom.
President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria condemned the latest kidnapping as “inhumane and totally unacceptable”.
He said in a statement: “This administration will not succumb to blackmail by bandits who target innocent school students in the expectations of huge ransom payments.”
“Our primary objective is to get the hostages safe, alive and unharmed,” the Nigerian president added.
The president said that although authorities could deploy “massive force against the bandits”, there were fears that the schoolgirls could be used as human shields.
At least 42 people, including 27 students, who were kidnapped in Kagara, in neighbouring Niger state last week, are yet to be released.
The 2014 kidnap of 276 schoolgirls in the north-eastern town of Chibok by militant group Boko Haram brought global attention to the scourge of raids on schools in Nigeria but the most recent attacks are suspected to be the work of criminal gangs.
Friday’s attack happened at 01:00 local time when a group of gunmen arrived at the school in Jangebe town with pick-up vehicles and motorcycles, a teacher told news site Punch.