Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian voiced Tehran’s readiness to help the Nigerian government and nation free the more than two-hundred school girls who have been kidnapped by Boko Haram, a Wahhabi Al-Qaeda affiliate in Nigeria.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to extend any kind of help to the Nigerian government and nation to resolve this problem,” Amir Abdollahian said in a meeting with Nigerian Ambassador to Tehran Tukur Mani on Monday.
Earlier this month, the Iranian foreign ministry deplored the Boko Haram’s kidnapping of the school girls and called it an inhumane move.
“Unfortunately, Nigeria has been entangled by the terrorist groups for a while and its security and stability have been endangered and the Nigerian citizens have sustained loss and damage,” Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham told reporters in Tehran.
She expressed concern about the abduction of the Nigerian girls, and said, “We completely reject this inhumane act as an unacceptable move and we hope that action will be adopted to prevent operation of extremist groups and terrorists in Nigeria and the world and we hope that stability and tranquility will be established in that country at the earliest.”
Fears for the fate of 276 Nigerian girls turned even more nightmarish last Monday when the leader of the Islamist militant group that kidnapped them announced plans to sell them.
“I abducted your girls. I will sell them in the market, by Allah,” a man claiming to be Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said in a video first obtained by AFP.
Boko Haram is a militant group receiving training from al Qaeda affiliates, according to US officials. Its name means “Western education is sin”. In his nearly hourlong, rambling video, Shekau repeatedly called for Western education to end.
Yesterday, the Iranian Parliament Speaker’s Adviser for International Affairs, Hossein Sheikholeslam, condemned Boko Haram for its wrong deeds, specially the abduction of the school girls, and said the group’s actions run counter to Islamic teachings.
“The behavior of this group is very horrible and has not been witnessed even in the Medieval ages and I clearly state that such behavior isn’t related to Islam at all,” Sheikholeslam said on Sunday.
He blamed the British for creating such groups to prevent the spread of religious populism by displaying an extremist image of the compassionate religion of Islam.