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New Boko Haram video purports to show kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls

By Allen Cone

LAGOS, Nigeria, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Boko Haram released a new video Sunday purporting to show Nigerian schoolgirls abducted from Chibok two years ago and claiming several of the captives were killed in military airstrikes

The video, more than 11 minutes long, is addressed to the "families of the Chibok girls." A Boko Haram militant speaks in the Hausa language in front of about 40 girls wearing headscarves.

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In April 2014, Boko Haram militants kidnapped 276 teenage girls from their boarding school in Chibok. Some escaped but about 215 girls remain missing. In May, one girl, Amina Ali was rescued.

The video begins with a masked man, carrying a gun, speaking to the camera.

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"Presently, some of the girls are crippled, some are terribly sick and some of them, as I had said, died during bombardment by the Nigerian military," the fighter said, appearing before a group of more than 40 young women.

The man says the girls will be exchanged for Boko Haram prisoners held by the Nigerian government.

"We don't want to do anything with these girls. Our demand remains the same," he said. "We want the government to release our fighters who have been in detention for ages; otherwise, we will never release these girls."

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One girl, who calls herself Maida Yakubu, confirms she was picked up at the Chibok government school for girls.

"We are not happy living here," the girl said in the video. "I'm begging our parents to meet the government to release their people so that we can be released."

Maida's mother, Esther, is among several parents of Chibok girls who recently published open letters to their daughters. They explain pain they feel at their children's absence.

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At the end of the graphic video, several injured bodies are strewn across the ground.

The video was posted by Nigerian journalist Ahmad Salkida on Twitter.

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