Boko Haram Releases 21 Chibok Schoolgirls
Militant video/Site Institute via AP File

On Thursday, Boko Haram released 21 Chibok schoolgirls to Nigerian authorities as part of a deal brokered by the Swiss government and the International Committee of the Red Cross. 

Thursday’s release marks the largest group freed since Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls in 2014. Terms of the release weren’t immediately announced, according to CNN, but a source with knowledge of the deal, who wished to remain anonymous, said no jailed Boko Haram militants were released in exchange. 

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Mallam Garba Shehu, spokesman for Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, stated that the 21 girls have been placed in the custody of the Department of State Services, the Nigerian domestic intelligence agency. Shehu said, “The release of the girls … is the outcome of negotiations between the (Nigerian) administration and the Boko Haram brokered by the International Red Cross and the Swiss government. The negotiations will continue.”

The girls have not been identified. Shehu added that they were resting before being handed over to the Vice President.