Feb. 26 (UPI) -- For the third time in two months, armed gunmen on Friday kidnapped a group of schoolchildren in northern Nigeria, authorities said.
Police say the gunmen abducted more than 300 girls from the state-run Government Girls Science Secondary School in Jangebe, about 440 miles northeast of Lagos. It's the third such kidnapping in Nigeria since December.
A police officer was killed in the attack, officials said.
"At this moment, l cannot say how many students were taken away by the gunmen until l get there, but we have already mobilized security men and members of the vigilante who are now in pursuit of the suspected abductors," security commissioner Abubakar Dauran told reporters.
One official said the gunmen abducted the girls in the darkness before dawn Friday, and most were forced away on foot.
"They came on about 20 motorcycles and they marched the abducted girls into the forest," a government official told CNN. "The sad part is that there's a military checkpoint that is about four minutes away from the school."
Militant group Boko Haram has previously carried out similar abductions, including the Chibok girls in 2014. No group immediately claimed responsibility for Friday's kidnappings.
Earlier this month, kidnappers took 42 staffers and students from the Government Science College in Kagara, also in northern Nigeria. A similar abduction in Kanakar in December took 300 schoolboys, who were later rescued.