2 Escaped Boko Haram Victims Graduate From High School

By Taryn Finley, huffingtonpost.com

Huffington post.

Two of the nearly 300 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2014 are telling their story.

Joy Bishara, 20, and Lydia Pogu, 19, are among the 57 girls who were able to escape from the terrorist group. The duo gave People a detailed account of horrors they faced when the gunmen invaded their school in Chibok, Nigeria, and the events that followed.

The girls were sleeping when the invasion occurred. They woke to the sounds of gunshots and bombs. Pogu told People that men in uniforms stormed into their dorm and told them they were officers who were there to protect them. But the girls said they knew they weren’t real officers based on the way they described themselves….

She said they gave the girls an ultimatum: run away and die or get on a truck and leave with them.

People.com. Cousins Lydia, left, and Joy, right, pose for a portrait showing off their diplomas and university scholarships to Southeastern University in Florida .

Once the truck drove away with the girls on it, it created clouds of dust, making it difficult to see behind the truck. Girls began jumping from the truck and running away in different directions. Bishara and two other girls found each other in the bush and were able to stop a motorcyclist, who brought them back to Chibok.

Bishara and Pogu were able to return back to their families. In August of the same year, the duo and several other girls who escaped moved to the United States to complete school. With the help of a Christian nonprofit and a Nigerian activist group, they were able to attend boarding school in Virginia. Bishara and Pogu transferred their senior year and recently graduated from Canyonville Christian Academy. Both gave speeches at the ceremony.

They will be attending Southeastern University in Florida in the fall and have started a GoFundMe to help with their expenses.

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‘Proof of Life’ Video Shows Some of Chibok, Nigeria’s Kidnapped Girls

By Breanna Edwards, theRoot.com

Captors sent the video, which shows 15 of the girls, to negotiators, but the girls’ parents were unaware of its existence until recently.

Image from “proof of life” video showing 15 of the girls kidnapped from Chibok, Nigeria CNN SCREENSHOT

Image from “proof of life” video showing 15 of the girls kidnapped from Chibok, Nigeria. CNN SCREENSHOT

…CNN reports that the video had been seen by negotiators and some members of the government, but the parents of the girls had not seen the footage until now.

Parents watching the video broke into tears as they caught sight of the children they have not seen in over two years….

The video, which is believed to have been recorded in December 2015 as part of negotiations with terrorist group Boko Haram, was released by someone who reportedly wanted to give the girls’ parents hope that their daughters were still alive, and to push the government to do more for their release….

Toward the end of the two-minute clip, one girl, identified as Naomi Zakaria, makes the final appeal, which CNN notes may be scripted.

“I am speaking on 25 December, 2015, on behalf of the all the Chibok girls, and we are all well,” she says, emphasizing the word “all.”…

…(T)he government also acknowledged that it is not able to confirm or refute the authenticity of the footage….

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