Ex-president Jonathan allegedly prevented UK from rescuing Chibok girls
The Observer is alleging that ex-Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan deliberately disallowed the UK government from rescuing the over 200 school children who were kidnapped from a secondary school in Chibok, Borno state.
Although some of the missing girls have since been rescued at different times, more than half of them are still missing and are believed to still be in the custody of the radical Islamist sect and the one-time Bayelsa state governor allegedly played a role in their continuous stay away from home.
The British Armed Forces had reportedly offered to rescue the girls and had conducted air reconnaissance in a mission named Operation Turus over the region where the girls were believed to have been moved to, but Jonathan was said to have refused their help.
A source involved in the rescue mission was quoted to have told The Observer that, “The girls were located in the first few weeks of the RAF mission.
“We offered to rescue them, but the Nigerian government declined.
“The aircraft continued to track the girls, as they were broken into smaller groups over the following months.”
Meanwhile, talks between Nigeria and Boko Haram militants over the release of the girls could extend to negotiating peace in the conflict-hit northeast, said a mediator involved in the discussions.
In October, the Boko Haram insurgents freed 21 of around 220 girls they kidnapped in April 2014 from the northern town of Chibok following mediation by Switzerland and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
Reuters reports that the mediator and lawyer Zannah Mustapha said negotiations with the group, which has waged a seven-year campaign to create an Islamic state in northeast Nigeria, must go beyond the fate of the estimated 195 girls still held captive.