– High stake negotiations and prisoner swaps reportedly led to the release of the 21 Chibok girls on Sunday, say reports
– Presidency said no prisoners were swapped but sources in the know say that not fewer than four top Boko Haram prisoners were exchanged for the girls
– The prisoners exchanged for the girls have only been in Nigeria’s custody for some months
The release of 21 Chibok girls by Boko Haram terrorists on Thursday, October 13 happened only after tough negotiations between the Islamist sect, the federal government and other parties.
Sahara Reporters is reporting that agreement was reached only after the federal government agreed to exchange the girls with four high profile Boko Haram detainees.
It wrote: “Nigerian security officials have confirmed to SaharaReporters that today’s release of 21 Chibok schoolgirls was secured after intense negotiations with the Islamist terror group, Boko Haram, adding that the Federal Government agreed to swap four high-profile Boko Haram detainees for the freed girls. Our sources said the Boko Haram fighters had been in detention for months.”
The report contradicts the statement by the presidency that no prisoner swaps happened. According to information and culture minister Lai Mohammed made this statement while speaking with pressmen in Abuja on Thursday after news of the release of the 21 girls broke.
Sahara Reporters however corroborated the presidency’s report that international organisations and at least one foreign government took part in the negotiations that led to the deal which effected the girls’ release.
“Our sources said the International Red Cross and the Swiss government brokered the deal that yielded the release of 21 girls. The 21 freed girls were among more than 200 schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram in mid-April 2014 from a school where they were gathered to sit exams.”
Meanwhile, the BBOG has hailed President Muhammadu Buhari, the Nigerian military and everybody that took part in the negotiations that led to the release of the 21 girls on Thursday.
Source : Naij.comNaij.com