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May 6th, 2014
04:46 AM ET

Pressure Mounts for U.S. to Help Find Kidnapped Nigerian Schoolgirls

The United States is offering its help, but making clear that the Nigerian government must take the lead in finding more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

Officials told CNN the Obama administration is sharing intelligence with Nigerian authorities and could provide other assistance, but there is no planning to send U.S. troops.

With a World Economic Forum gathering set to begin Wednesday in Abuja, the Nigerian government came under mounting pressure to save the girls abducted in the country's remote northeast and threatened with being sold into slavery.

On a trip to Africa, Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States "will do everything possible to support the Nigerian government to return these young women to their homes and to hold the perpetrators to justice."

In Washington, U.S. officials offered few specific details on American help being provided.

"We are going to keep working with the Nigerians privately on that," State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters. "Obviously they have come out very publicly and said that they are, you know, making every effort to find these girls. I just don't think we are going to outline how we are helping them. What we are focused on is making sure they can find (the girls) and bring them home to their families."

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Filed under: Missing Nigerian girls • Nigeria