A man claiming to be the leader of an Al Qaeda-trained terrorist group holding 223 girls snatched from a Nigerian school threatened Monday to sell them as brides — even those as young as 9.
In a shocking 57-minute video, a man professing to be Abubakar Shekau called women “slaves” and ranted that Allah gave him permission to sell the abducted girls for as little as $12.
It was the first time the group, called Boko Haram, boasted responsibility for the April 15 mass abductions at the Chibok Girls Secondary School in northeast Nigeria. “I abducted your girls. I will sell them in the market, by Allah. I will sell them off and marry them off,” the man in the video railed, while holding an assault rifle.
Nigerian officials were attempting to confirm if the speaker is Shekau, who they believed had been killed in a 2009 clash with security forces.
“I will marry off a woman at the age of 12. I will marry off a girl at the age of 9,” the man says on the tape released Monday to Western media outlets. An intermediary for the group has told Nigerian officials that Boko Haram — which in the Nigerian language Hausa means “Western education is sinful” — is prepared to negotiate ransoms.
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