The abduction of over 200 school students by Islamist group Boko Haram has created a crisis for Nigeria’s government.
The students were kidnapped on 14 April from a girls’ boarding school in the north eastern state of Borno.
Boko Haram’s leader said the girls should not be at school and will be sold into marriage.
President Goodluck Jonathan admitted that government forces have no idea where the prisoners are being held, in his first statement during the three-week crisis.
The only people arrested so far have been supporters of the victims. The president’s wife wanted to meet with the victims’ mothers.
As it was too dangerous for them to travel to the capital they sent supporters who had previously organised protests against government inaction. The first lady took offence and had them arrested.
Baba Aye of the Socialist Workers League in Nigeria wrote last year, “Unleashing terror by the security forces is no answer to Boko Haram.
“Boko Haram is a symptom of serious economic and social problems and an indication of the level of despair that many poor people feel.”