Nigerian army claims the recapture of Chibok, abducted girls’ hometown

The Nigerian army says it has regained control of Chibok, the northeastern town where more than 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped by Islamic extremists more than six months ago. The army wrested back control of Chibok from the Islamic militants of Boko Haram on Saturday, according to Nigerian army spokesman Brigadier General Olajide Olaleye. He encouraged Chibok residents to return to their homes. The northeastern Nigerian town in Borno state had been captured by Boko Haram insurgents on Thursday night. Thousands of residents fled when the rebels entered the town shooting from pickup trucks and motorcycles.

Chibok is firmly in the hands of the Nigerian army. Chibok is free. Secured.

Nigerian army spokesman Brigadier General Olajide Olaleye

Chibok was recaptured by troops of the Nigerian Army’s 7 Division, said Colonel Sani Usman, a deputy director of army public relations. Villagers around Chibok said they saw a large deployment of soldiers moving towards the town on Saturday morning. Chibok is an enclave of mainly Christian families, some involved in translating the Bible into local languages, in the mainly Muslim north of Nigeria. Although the army has regained control of Chibok, Boko Haram still holds several towns and cities in an area covering an estimated 20,000 square kilometres where the insurgents have declared an Islamic caliphate.