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People Worldwide Mark First Anniversary Of Nigerian Schoolgirl Kidnapping

The Islamist group Boko Haram kidnapped 276 schoolgirls last year — and more than 200 are still missing. Marches took place in Nigeria and across Europe on Tuesday and more are scheduled in the U.S. later in the day.

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On April 14, 2014, the Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls from a boarding school in the northern town of Chibok. The abduction sparked global outrage and the social media campaign #BringBackOurGirls.

Tuesday is the attack's first anniversary. Rallies are taking place around the world for the more than 200 girls who remain missing — and many marches, like this one in Nigeria’s capital Abuja, have asked schools to take part.

Each girl holds a placard with a name, number and chants #bringbackourgirls ...

#ChibokGirls ambassadors about to march #oneyearon. #BringBackOurGirls #abuja #Nigeria


And in Paris there was this demo in front of the Eiffel Tower.

#instantané #BringBackOurGirls à #Paris

On the other side of the world, this school in New Zealand also held a rally. Demos across the U.S are due to take place later on Tuesday.

Some people took a stand individually by posting selfies with #BringBackOurGirls signs, like this woman in Barcelona.

Boko Haram, based in northeastern Nigeria, began its attacks in 2009 and has since launched increasingly violent assaults on Africa's most populous country. An ongoing battle that pits the Islamists against Nigeria's government and informal vigilante groups has claimed around 15,000 lives, with around half of those deaths happening in 2014, according to a Unicef report released on Monday.

Michelle Obama, the United States' first lady, and Malala Yousafzai, the Nobel Prize-winning Pakistani women's rights activist, are among the famous women to have supported the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. Yousafzai posted this audio message to the missing girls on her website last week in the run-up to the anniversary.

Nigeria's president-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, who is due to take office later this month, campaigned hard on a vow to quash Boko Haram if elected. Buhari said on Tuesday that, while he would make every effort to find the girls, he could not promise he would succeed.

Shyamantha Asokan is a foreign news reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Shyamantha Asokan at

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