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tv   Our World  BBC News  June 27, 2021 9:30pm-10:01pm BST

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takes over as health secretary following matt hancock's resignation. a painful search through the rubble in florida, four more bodies are found in the ruins of the collapsed loading in miami. an urgent investigation as classified ministry of defence documents containing details about the british military are found behind a bus stop in kent. bt and satellite operator one web signed a deal to explore ways to provide broadband internet to more remote areas of the uk. and the czech republic unexpectedly knock the netherlands out of the european championships with a 2—0 victory. they will now face denmark in the quarterfinals in baku on saturday. now on bbc news — kidnappers have seized more than a thousand students and staff from schools in a series of raids across northern nigeria. our world investigates the wave of abductions and their devastating consequences. it should be the safest
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place a child could be. why do you study? from there, to go back towards what? but schools in northern nigeria are being targeted by kidnappers. since december, more than 1,000 students have been abducted in the region. and it's affecting everyone from the youngest to the oldest pupils, rich and poor. save this country from the hands of these evil people! she said: "mummy, they came to our school yesterday night and kidnapped us." she now says: "mummy, come and see, they are just beating us." so, why are criminal gangs kidnapping schoolchildren? to find out, i've travelled across northern and central nigeria,
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speaking to those affected. this banditry is not some mere criminality. and the only way to deal with it is to launch a full—scale war against the bandits. under the cover of darkness, criminal gangs are disturbing the peace. armed men are targeting boarding schools, stealing children away as they sleep. since the kidnapping of the chibok girls in 2014, the mass abduction of schoolchildren has become an increasingly common phenomenon here in nigeria. and every time, it follows a similar, chilling pattern. armed gunmen storm dormitories in the middle of the night, often arriving by foot
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or by motorbike, and take dozens of students with them into nearby forests. 39 students and staff were seized from the forestry school in the northern state of kaduna in early march. a video of the hostages was sent to the parents on social media. victory sani and her sister, rejoice, were among those abducted. since that day, their parents have been trying to secure their release. victory is my first daughter, she has done a lot of schooling, she's a brilliant student. rejoice is someone who loves hairdressing,
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she plaits, she braids. the two of them are too addicted to themselves that they are always finding it difficult to live with each other. mr sani, since the incident, have you been contacted by the bandits? first contact that we was from the bandits, demanding for 500 million naira from the state government. and when we got a video of our children being flogged in the bush, i was sent to the social media by the bandits. we decided to go in protests. chanting.
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after ten days with no news of the 39 pupils seized at the forestry school... chanting. ..friday sani and other parents took to the street to protest. the government threatened to prosecute anyone negotiating with the kidnappers, including parents. the government came out again with another press statement, that anyone caught negotiating with the bandits would be arrested and prosecuted. but we would prefer to be arrested, provided our children would be in their home, at home. so, you are saying the strategy is not working? it's not working. if there is any strategy at all! people are dying and it looks as if nobody cares. it looks as if nobody cares. and we are still calling on the government to do something, fast. because those people will lose their patience and do something irrational.
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over the past seven months, a wave of kidnappings targeting schools and universities has swept the region. there have been nine mass abductions of students across five states. many believe the payment of ransom has created an industry. more than 1,000 students and staff have been taken and nine students have been killed. this round of kidnappings started in december, when more than 300 schoolboys were abducted from their dorms in the town of kankara. the town lies in a rural part of nigeria's north—western katsina state, vulnerable to attack. at the time i travelled to kankara to cover the story. back then, i met usama, a student with sickle cell, who had managed to escape the kidnappers. i also spoke to ruqayya bello
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and bello sidi, whose asthmatic 14—year—old son, umar, was still missing. the kidnapped boys were released after six days. now, the school remains closed, leaving many boys at home without an education. the situation remains precarious. less than six months ago, we drove down this road to the town of kankara, to cover the kidnapping of over 300 schoolboys by armed men. since then, the area has become even more unsafe, with multiple reports of attacks. usama and others in his year have been relocated to a school in a safer location, closer to the state capital.
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why do you study? from there, to go back toward, what? what about the second one? he's one of the lucky few attending class, so he can take his school leaving exams. z is what? y? that moves from 2 to y. while he's pleased to be reunited with his friends, the past is hard to forget. as a young person studying in nigeria today, how safe do you feel?
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14—year—old umar has also been reunited with his parents. he remembers the day he got to see them again fondly. tell us about your time in the forest, umar, what was it like? was it difficult, did you have enough to eat?
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when you think about umar going back to the school, to sleep there, do you feel a bit nervous?
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in katsina, where ransoms were allegedly played, umar and others were safely reunited with their families. but one state in nigeria's north has taken a different approach. i am travelling to neighbouring kaduna, where the state's governor has taken a stand against the payment of ransoms. he has repeatedly appeared on local media to say he will not speak to, let alone negotiate with, armed gangs that are attacking rural communities. it has had devastating consequences — the number of kidnappings have increased. # we sing his praise # we rise to see ourjesus.#
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mr and mrs yoanna's daughter dorothy attended the private greenfield university. 0n the day after she was abducted, mrs yoanna got a phone call from the kidnappers, who put dorothy on the line. she said, "mummy, they came to our school yesterday night—time, they kidnapped us, we are in the bush. she now said, "mummy, come and see, they are just beating us." then the man collected the phone and he said they need money. if you want them to release our children, we must pay 800 million. i shouted and screamed, isaid, "800 million?" so they asked for 800 million naira. that's about $2 million. did you have that kind of money? no.
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and i told him, "how did you expect us to get such money?" that was the last i spoke to her, and the man. we are still asking questions as to how this thing - happened, why our daughter? just two days later, mr yoanna got a call from the university telling him to come to a local hospital to identify the bodies of three students. when i went inside, the first person i saw was my daughter. i screamed, i said, "they killed my daughter!" ijust wept and then it was when i came to the home that i broke the news to them that dorothy is no more. that was when i started crying. that is when my voice now ceased, that very day. you both had the worst possible news
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that any parent could hear. are you satisfied with the response from the authorities? i'm not satisfied because this thing happened on tuesday, and they called me on wednesday, and on friday, they killed my daughter. there is nojustice in that. i don't believe there is justice in that case. kaduna's state government says it has a strict policy of not negotiating with criminals, they don't pay ransoms. what do you both make of that decision? the people whojudge, the whole world should judge on that. therefore we will be praying i for our whole nation, nigeria. this nation is burning. if they are not ready to negotiate with criminals, i also hope they have the way of getting the criminals because if they don't get the criminals and they are not negotiating with them, then we are in trouble.
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father, keep watch over your children. | you are the keeper of zion, | you never sleep or slumber. save this country from the hands of these evil peoples. _ you know, the more you speak to parents whose children have been kidnapped, the more overwhelming this problem is. i became a parent myself a year ago so i understand, if your child has been taken, all you want them is for them to come back home. but then there is the other side of the argument. if you pay ransoms, the kidnappings continue, it's an industry that is growing, so if you are a parent in nigeria right now, it's frightening because you want it to stop, but then you want your children to come back, and there are no clear answers. two more students from greenfield were killed after dorothy.
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eventually, the remaining abductees were released after the parents paid the kidnappers 150 million naira. that's $360 , 000. but nasir el—rufai, the governor of kaduna state, is refusing to pay ransoms, a policy which only seems to have emboldened the kidnappers. they have decided that they have to bring this state government to its knees by concentrating their attacks in this state. so you think that one of the reasons why they may be targeting the states is because you've made it clear that you won't pay ransoms? yes. do you think then that by making that statement, you're putting your citizens, your residents of kaduna state, at greater risk? not necessarily. i think, in the long run, or even in the medium term, it actually makes the state safer. we still have kidnappers, we have individuals being kidnapped, we even have attempted kidnap of students, they have been successful in two cases, but not on the kind of scale you've seen in other states.
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here in kaduna just last week, three university students were kidnapped. yes. so how can you tell their parents that their children were safer? i commiserate with the parents, i sympathise with them, but that will not change our stand. the only way to end kidnapping is for societies to stake a stand that we will not pay. i know the pain of losing children, but i have to subordinate that to the overall interest of the society which elected me to provide leadership. the nigerian government has long denied the links between criminal groups operating in north—western nigeria and the extremist group boko haram in the north—east. but in recent months, they have acknowledged that the two security crises may now be connected. we have two branches of islamic state active or building up here, and it's quite worrying,
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and this is why i said that the country is at war. this banditry is not some mere criminality, it is war, and the only way to deal with it is to launch a full—scale war against the bandits because the bandits and terrorists are linked, and they are one and the same. if boko haram's influence is spreading, doesn't it show that the federal government doesn't have a handle on security at all in nigeria, like many nigerians are saying, they haven't handled security well. no, security has definitely improved. those that are, yeah, yeah... i think many parents would disagree with you. when we came into office, boko haram occupied how many local governments in borno state? today they are restricted. should they have been wiped out? yeah. we work with the security forces to try to rescue the students. they are doing their best, but they can do better. the resources available to them can be improved, definitely. criminal gangs are not only targeting schools.
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they also regularly abduct civilians travelling by road. some think that negotiation is the only way to end the the kidnapping pandemic sweeping rural areas. villages have been raided and the death toll is rising. according to the international crisis group, many but not all of these gangs are made up of members of the seminomadic fulani ethnic group. traditionally they made their living from cattle rearing, but climate change and competition for resources has left many of them without an income. controversial islamic cleric ahmad gumi has acted as a self—appointed mediator between groups of kidnappers and the government, but the sheikh says the marginalisation of the nigeria's fulani population
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is counterproductive. they are voiceless in nigeria, so they express themselves in a violent way. it's dangerous for a nation like nigeria that has a lot of money to allow a big segment of this population, without any formal or informal education, to behave in a certain manner. i understand that they might be unhappy with the way they've been treated by the authorities in the past. do you think that that killing, that action is justified? it doesn't justify crime at all from whatever angle it is. when you put people in the middle of a war, they feel it is right to kill the opposite. that is what is happening in nigeria now. the press has been saying, fulani men are criminals, killers, the nation is charged against fulani. innocent people.
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while we were filming, there is news of victory and rejoice, the missing sisters from the forestry school. they finally made it home. there arejoyful prayers this time, as the girls are reunited with their family. rejoice and victory, you're home. welcome home. ijoined them on a video call from lagos. what is it like to have your daughters home
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with you, how do you feel? now that the this thing has happened to you, this terrible thing, are you going to apply to university? do you want to continue with your education? what about you, rejoice, are you scared? especially if you have to sleep there? the students�* release was negotiated by sheikh gumi. the return is not an uncommon experience. the majority of children who have been kidnapped in the last eight months have gone home.
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but there is no doubt that education here has been deeply disturbed. the subject is what, plural. the answer is plural. even before the kidnappings, nigeria was home to the largest number of out—of—school children in the world. it is correct. in the north of the country, only one in two attend school. now schools here are no longer secure. many have been forced to close. families continue to live in fear that their child could be the next to be taken.
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good evening. sunday brought us a day of mixed weather types across the uk. for many areas, blue sky and sunshine. this was the glorious picture a little bit earlier in whitley bay. certainly much warmer and brighter than it was there yesterday. but look at this — cornwall, a lot of rain, a lot of cloud, and we are going to continue seeing that north—south split to the weather over the next few days. dry with sunny spells for many northern parts of the uk, whereas further south, closer to an area of low pressure, showers or thunderstorms in the forecast at times. so here is that slow—moving area of low pressure. it's not going to shift very quickly over the next few days. it has already brought some heavy, showery rain to parts of south west england, and as we head through the course of the night, heavy downpours, showers and some thunderstorms across many southern counties of england, but particularly heavy and persistent for the south—west of england, and later tonight into south—east wales as well. so some localised flooding possible here.
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looking at double figures, not as cold as it was last night across the north of scotland. so, through monday, then, we have got more cloud across england and wales. some scattered showers, the odd thunderstorm first thing in the morning, i think. later in the day, some sunshine breaking through in the south, but as temperatures rise, we are set to see some scattered showers and further thunderstorms. they will be hit and miss, we will not all see them, but further north, many places having another fine and dry day, temperatures of 21 or 22 in the warmest spots. and that continues to rise in the north as we head through the next couple of days. but if you are planning on watching the action in the championships at wimbledon, they may well be affected by a bit of rain at times, especially on monday and tuesday. so in the evening and overnight, we will continue to see heavy downpours and thunderstorms, there could be some localised flooding with some of these really heavy showers for southern england in particular. but elsewhere is looking largely dry. into tuesday, another fairly cloudy day, particularly for the southern half of england and wales. lots more sunshine in the north, light winds, sunshine, and it really will feel quite warm for northern ireland and scotland.
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temperatures 2a or 25. cooler where you have got those heavy showers, about 18 celsius there in london, where it stays unsettled. eventually we will start to lose that area of low pressure, drifting off towards the east probably by around thursday, higher pressure as we end the working week right across the uk. so, the outlook for the next five days, we are going to see some fairly heavy showers at times, but from around wednesday, it looks drier from many areas, perhaps some more showers, though, by the weekend. bye— bye.
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a new health secretary begins work following matt hancock's resignation for breaching social distancing. former chancellor sajid javid says his priority is getting out of the pandemic, and he's honoured to be taking the role. i also know that it comes with huge responsibility and i will do everything i can to make sure that i deliver for the people of this great country. his predecessor's departure came after an affair with his aid and the breaking rules he made. labour says the matter not closed. there's huge questions still to answer. if anybody thinks that the resignation of matt hancock is the end of the issue, i think they're wrong. we will be looking at challengers for the new health secretary and for
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the nhs in england.


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