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Scores of girls abducted from Nigerian school by suspected Islamist rebels

Suspected Islamist rebels have abducted at least 100 girls from a secondary school in Nigeria's northeast Borno state, according to local officials. The assailants are believed to be members of Boko Haram.

The attackers arrived early in the morning on Tuesday with a large truck at the girls' college in the village of Chibok, approximately 70 miles (113 km) southwest of Maiduguri, according to local police spokesman Gideon Jibrin. He added that the girls were forced into the vehicle, though some were able to escape.

"Many girls were abducted by the rampaging gunmen who stormed the school in a convoy of vehicles," Emmanuel Sam, an education official in Chibok, told the AFP news agency.

The abductors are suspected members of the Islamist group Boko Haram, which has previously attacked schools and other government institutions in the northeast. Borno is one of three states the Nigerian government has declared in a state of emergency in an effort to curb attacks by Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is forbidden."

A bomb blast on Monday

, allegedly carried out by Boko Haram, killed dozens of people in the capital Abuja. Last week, more than 100 people were killed during Boko Haram attacks in Maiduguri. Thousands of people have been killed since 2009

during the group's insurgency

.

dr/msh (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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