- Title: NIGERIA: President Goodluck Jonathan says "war has been unleashed" by extremists
- Date: 29th May 2014
- Summary: ABUJA, NIGERIA (MAY 27, 2014) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE READING NEWSPAPERS
- Embargoed: 13th June 2014 13:00
- Location: Nigeria
- Country: Nigeria
- Topics: General,Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA2N2OUPWEVMBW9XCGJI4FRQQLM
- Story Text: Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan said on Thursday (May 29) that the country's 15 years of democracy was threatened by extremist groups such as Boko Haram.
"Dear compatriots, it is a sad fact that as I address you today, all the gains of the past 15 years of democratic governance in our country are threatened by the presence of international terror on our shores. Our dear country Nigeria is facing a new challenge. War has been unleashed on us. Extremist foreign elements, collaborating with some of our misguided citizens, are focused on an attempt to bring down our country and the democracy and freedom we cherish and celebrate today," he said on the country's annual Democracy Day.
Nigeria's military says it knows where the more than 200 girls abducted by Boko Haram are but has ruled out using force to rescue them, the state news agency quoted Chief of Defence Staff Air Marshal Alex Badeh as saying on Monday (May 26).
Seven weeks since Boko Haram militants abducted the girls taking exams at a secondary school in the remote northeastern village of Chibok, little is known of their whereabouts or what the military is doing to get them out.
Jonathan used his televised address to condemn the kidnap.
"The despicable abduction of school girls from Chibok in Borno State has brought to the awareness of the entire world, the heartless brutality of these terrorists who want to instigate a descent into anarchy and balkanize our nation. In recent years, terrorist attacks have claimed the lives of several of our compatriots, many have been injured or maimed, whole villages and communities have been destroyed and the economy of some of our states is in jeopardy," he said.
It is not clear what an offensive could entail given that the northeast of the country plagued by Boko Haram insurgents has been under a state of emergency and a full scale military operation for a year - and Nigerian forces are stretched to breaking point.
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