By Ann Marie Foley - 23 June, 2014
The search for more than 200 kidnapped schoolgirls in Nigeria is being scaled down according to some reports.
According to Reuters, the General in charge of the search operation has stated that 219 girls are still missing since Boko Haram militants kidnapped them from their secondary school in northeast Borno state on 14 April.
He added that getting the girls out safely is more important than the publicity generated by the blame game that has clouded the issue.
The violent acts by the Boko Haram group continue.
Last week at least 14 people, including small children, were killed when a bomb exploded as fans had gathered to watch a World Cup football match together.
Although no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, Islamic militants involved in Boko Haram are widely suspected.
A poster bearing the simple message of #Bring Back Our Girls was seen at Nigeria’s opening match against Iran on 17 June.
When Nigeria played Bosnia, a number of people protested by wearing T-shirts with the slogan “The World Unites Against Boko Haram”.
The protesters felt that the World Cup was a good platform to show the world how real Nigerians feel about Boko Harem.
Boko Haram, which translates as “Western education is a sin” has gone from strength to strength in Nigeria, with more kidnappings and attacks on villages and schools.
The kidnappings have attracted huge international interest especially with the ‘Bring back our Girls’ campaign on Facebook and Twitter and elsewhere on the internet.
At the height of the campaign, Pope Francis tweeted “Let us all join in prayer for the immediate release of the schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria.”
On Mother’s Day in America, Michelle Obama stood in for her husband in his weekly presidential address, and she expressed her “outrage” at the kidnapping.
“What happened in Nigeria was not an isolated incident. It’s a story we see every day as girls around the world risk their lives to pursue their ambitions,” she said.
“In these girls, Barack and I see our own daughters. We see their hopes, their dreams, and we can only imagine the anguish their parents are feeling right now.”
‘Bring back our Girls’ campaign has highlighted that it is more than 69 days since the school girls were taken.
A number of global petitions, prayer meetings and actions are highlighted.