Written by Kumudu Jayawardana
08 May, 2014 | 9:25 am
Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who survived a shooting by Taliban insurgents, has said the world must not stay silent over the abduction of more than 200 girls in Nigeria.
She told the BBC that “if we remain silent then this will spread, this will happen more and more and more”.
The girls were kidnapped more than three weeks ago by Islamist Boko Haram militants in north-east Borno state.
Malala was shot in the head in 2012 for campaigning for girls’ education.
The 16-year-old survived after months of surgery and rehabilitation in the UK, and is now a vocal campaigner for girls’ access to education worldwide.
Former UN chief Kofi Annan, also appealed for action. He criticised both the Nigerian government and other African nations for not reacting faster to the kidnapping, and called on them to use whatever was at their disposal to help free the girls.
The abduction of the girls has overshadowed the World Economic Forum which opened in the Nigerian city of Abuja on Wednesday evening.
The US, UK and France have despatched teams of experts to Nigeria to help recover the girls.
Boko Haram has been accused of carrying out another attack in Borno state on Monday, in which some 300 people are reported to have died.
Residents said that gunmen went on the rampage in Gamboru Ngala after spreading a rumour that the abducted girls had been spotted elsewhere, prompting security forces to leave the town.
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