Photo Essay

  • Martha Mark, the mother of one of the kidnapped school girls cries as she displays her photo, in the family house, in Chibok, Nigeria, May 19, 2014.
  • Schoolgirls who have escaped from Boko Haram kidnappers in the village of Chibok, arrive at the Government house to speak with State Governor Kashim Shettima in Maiduguri on June 2, 2014.
  • Mothers of kidnapped girls weep on the grounds of the burned-out ruins of Chibok Government Girls Secondary School before a speech by a visiting local dignitary in Chibok, Nigeria, May 11, 2014.
  • Three girls, who escaped after they were abducted in the remote village of Chibok, walk while covered in white sheets as they are led out of a hall after a news conference in Lagos June 5, 2014. Several mothers of girls being held in Nigeria by militant group Boko Haram gathered in Lagos on Thursday, where non-government organisations and a U.S. state congressman offered them therapy and support. Boko Haram, a militant group waging a campaign to create an Islamic state in the region, abducted 276 girls from a?school?in Chibok on April 14. The three girls were covered in white sheets to protect their identities for fear of repercussions. REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye (NIGERIA - Tags: CRIME LAW POLITICS RELIGION CIVIL UNREST TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY) - RTR3SEUT
  • Kenyan activists shout slogans during a demonstration to protest against kidnapping of Nigerian school girls by Nigeria’s Islamist militant group Boko Haram, in Nairobi, Kenya, 15 May 2014.
  • Women attend a demonstration calling on the Nigerian government to rescue kidnapped schoolgirls from a Chibok secondary school, in Lagos, Nigeria, May. 5, 2014.
  • Nigerians shout slogans as they march during a demonstration to demand government to rescue schoolgirls abducted by suspected Boko Haram militants two weeks ago, in Lagos, Nigeria on May 01, 2014.
  • A girl attends a demonstration calling on the government to rescue kidnapped girls from a Chibok secondary school, during a workers day celebration in Lagos, Nigeria, May, 1. 2014.
  • Members of Lagos based civil society groups shout slogans calling for the release of missing Chibok schoolgirls at the state government house, in Lagos, Nigeria, on May 5, 2014.
  • Anti-riot police tear gas polytechnic students protesting the closure of schools in Abuja on April 29, 2014.
  • Nigerian security forces stand guard as demonstrators march during a rally to demand the government rescue schoolgirls abducted by suspected Boko Haram militants two weeks ago, in Lagos, Nigeria, May 01, 2014.
  • Women rest after a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary schoolgirls from the remote village of Chibok, in Lagos May 5, 2014.
  • A policeman stands beside children holding signs at a rally calling for the release of missing Chibok schoolgirls at the state government house, in Lagos, Nigeria, on May 5, 2014.
  • Women holding signs take part in a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary schoolgirls from the remote village of Chibok, in Lagos May 5, 2014.
  • An unidentified mother cries out during a demonstration with others who have daughters among the kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls, Tuesday April 29, 2014, in Abuja, Nigeria.
  • Four female students from a government secondary school in Chibok, who were abducted by gunmen and reunited with their families, walk in Chibok, Nigeria, April 21, 2014.
  • Women holding signs take part in a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary schoolgirls from the remote village of Chibok, in Lagos May 5, 2014.
  • People holding signs take part in a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary schoolgirls from the remote village of Chibok, in Lagos May 5, 2014.
  • People take part in a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary schoolgirls from the remote village of Chibok, in Lagos May 5, 2014.
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Nigerian schoolgirls have been missing for 100 days

Updated

July 22 marked 100 days since an Islamist militant group kidnapped hundreds of Nigerian schoolgirls from their dormitories. Concern for their safety continues as their parents and residents of the surrounding area still search for answers.

Boko Haram, the group that claimed responsibility for the mass abduction, initially took at least 276 girls from their school dormitories in Chibok and drove away with them in trucks in the middle of the night on April 14. They later captured more young women and threatened to “sell” them on the market.

The radical Islamist group has since attacked the northeastern town of Chibok. Nearly a dozen of the girls’ parents have died during the violence.

The kidnapping created an international outcry with some people criticizing Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan’s response to the missing teenagers.

A video emerged in May that appeared to show footage of at least 100 of the girls praying and dressed in full-length, black veils. World leaders, including President Barack Obama, called on the international community to respond to what they deemed “appalling actions” in Nigeria. At the request of Secretary of State John Kerry, a team of Americans traveled in May to Nigeria to assist leaders in their search efforts.

Politicians and celebrities took to Twitter using the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls to encourage the release of the teenage girls.

Boko Haram, which translates to “Western education is forbidden,” has been known for attacking schools, police stations, government buildings and churches. Members aim to establish an Islamist state in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country.