At least 91 people – more than 60 women and girls, and 31 schoolboys – were abducted last week by suspected Boko Haram militants, two months after the terror group kidnapped more than 300 schoolgirls in northeastern Nigeria, according to witnesses.
Local media reported about 60 people were abducted in attacks on villages south of Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state, between Thursday and Saturday.
Police walk past the school in Chibok, Nigeria, where Boko Haram militants abducted more than 300 girls.
Schoolgirls who escaped from Boko Haram militants receive information from Nigerian officials.
Mothers of the missing Nigerian schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram gunmen wait to get information from officials on May 5, 2014.
Nigerians protest the government’s failure to rescue abducted girls in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, on Wednesday.
Women attend a demonstration in Lagos, Nigeria, calling on the government to rescue schoolgirls kidnapped by the radical Islamist group Boko Haram.
The attack comes as more than 270 schoolgirls are still being held by Boko Haram more than two months after their abductions from a school in Chibok town in April. Several dozen of the girls managed to escape.
About 30 people were reported to have been killed by the extremists in the latest attack. Elderly residents fled their homes, trekking 15 miles to seek help.
Among those abducted by gunmen were women with young children and babies – a common occurrence in Borno state since last year, Nigeria’s Premium Times reported.
Boko Haram, a violent Islamist militia fighting for an Islamic state in Nigeria stepped up its attacks beginning five years ago and has recently launched violent raids on villages, markets, bus stations, churches and schools.
Nigeria has also seen bomb attacks on soccer fans watching World Cup soccer matches at public soccer viewing venues, which have been blamed on Boko Haram.
Last week’s attacks were on Kummabza, Yaga and Dagu, in the Damboa local government area, according to witnesses cited in local media reports.
Nigerian local and federal government officials and police haven’t confirmed the reports. But Premium Times quoted an unnamed federal security official who confirmed the abductions took place, while a village councilor confirmed the kidnappings to Associated Press.
Attacks on villages in northeastern Nigeria have been occurring almost daily, with Nigeria’s army seemingly incapable of enforcing security in vast swaths of the country.