Firsthand Reporting of Nigeria’s Abducted Schoolgirls

The Associated Press and CNN are among the few foreign news organizations unpacking the story, on the ground, in Chibok. 

Protesters in Kano rally for the return of Nigeria’s abducted schoolgirls.
Protesters in Kano rally for the return of Nigeria’s abducted schoolgirls. MINU ABUBAKAR/Getty Images

“Too Terrifying for Words,” Says One Who Escaped

CNN’s Nima Elbagir, Lillian Leposo and Nick Migwe made the dangerous journey to Chibok, Nigeria, to gather firsthand accounts of the abduction of the schoolgirls — and how people in the northeastern town are still living in fear,” according to an editor’s note introducing this CNN story on Monday:

“The terrifying news began to spread before the gun-wielding Islamist militants made it into Chibok last month. Villagers began to receive cell phone calls that the feared extremist group Boko Haram was on the way.

“No one knew what the attack would entail, that it would mean hundreds of schoolgirls plucked from their beds by a group of extremists who would later threaten to sell them.

” ‘It’s like they were coming for a shopping trip,’ a villager who witnessed the attack told CNN.

“Some lucky girls managed to escape that night when, after they were loaded into cargo trucks, they made a dash for freedom.

” ‘We would rather die than go,’ one of the girls told CNN. ‘We ran into the bush. We ran and we ran.’

“With fear in her eyes and voice, the young woman, who asked not to be identified, described the experience to a CNN crew that made the long, dangerous trip to her village.  . . .”

CNN was not alone in interviewing escapees. The Associated Press reported, “One of the girls who escaped from the terrorists’ camp has expressed fears of returning to school, describing the kidnapping as ‘too terrifying for words.’

“Science student Sarah Lawan, 19, told The Associated Press that more of the girls could have escaped but that they were frightened by their captors’ threats to shoot them.