Boko Haram Takfiri militants have denied claims by the Nigerian government about a recent truce agreement that would facilitate the release of more than 200 schoolgirls abducted by the group.
In a video released on Friday, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau rejected the Nigerian administration’s ceasefire announcement as false and ruled out future talks with Abuja over the issue.
“We have not made ceasefire with anyone. We did not negotiate with anyone. It’s a lie,” Shekau said.
On April 14, Boko Haram militants kidnapped 276 students from their secondary school in the northeastern town of Chibok in Borno state, triggering worldwide outrage. Reports say 57 of the girls managed to escape but 219 are still missing.
The Nigerian government announced on October 17 that it had secured a truce deal with Boko Haram over the release of the schoolgirls.
The Boko Haram leader, however, said that the kidnapped students have converted to Islam and have been married off since being abducted.
Boko Haram, whose name means “Western education is forbidden”, says its goal is to overthrow the Nigerian government.
Since beginning its operations in 2009, the militant group has claimed responsibility for numerous deadly gun and bomb attacks in various parts of Nigeria which have left more than 10,000 people dead so far.
Human Rights Watch has estimated that over 500 young women and girls have been abducted by Boko Haram militants over the past five years.