Nigerian Military Retracts Claim It Rescued Chibok Girls

Tuesday, a military spokesman issued - and then retracted - a statement saying Nigeria had rescued the missing schoolgirls.

Nigerian Military Retracts Claim It Rescued Chibok Girls
Encomium Magazine

A Nigerian military spokesman had to walk back a statement that, if true, would have been celebrated around the world.

Nigerian media began reporting Tuesday that an unknown number of the more than 200 Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped back in April had been rescued by the country's military. 

BBC: "General Olukolade did not give details of the number or how they came to be released, saying he would give such details later. All he can confirm now is that some of the girls have been released."

Well, not so fast. Almost as soon as the story broke, the Nigerian military retracted the spokesman's statement.

Apparently, some girls rescued from Boko Haram were transported to a military base Tuesday, but those girls weren't from the Chibok group and they weren't newly-rescued. We're guessing that's where the spokesman's confusion came from.

Nigeria's military doesn't have the best track record on communicating with the press. Two days after the girls were abducted, the military told the media that most of them had already been rescued, which of course turned out to be false. 

There have also been numerous reports that Abubakar Shekau, Boko Haram's leader, has been killed, including one from neighboring Cameroon's military on Monday. They've all turned out to be false as well. (Video via YouTube / Naija Palava)

But there may be some good news about the missing girls: a Red Cross official said over the weekend that the organization has been working out a prisoner exchange deal that might allow Nigeria to get the girls back.

Reports about those negotiations are still unconfirmed, and, as we've seen, it's best to take stories coming out of the tumultuous country with a grain of salt.