Following their abduction the night of April 14, more than 240 girls, as many as 90% of whom are reportedly Christians, likely await life-long domestic and sexual enslavement. Monday, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau pledged to sell the girls on the marketplace, stating Allah had “instructed” him to do so. Likely referring to human trafficking rings in the Lake Chad region, the girls are suspected of having been transported across the Nigerian border to the shores of Lake Chad where they are reportedly being sold for $12 into forced marriages before being ferried into Chad and Cameroon.
05/08/2014 Nigeria (Fox News) – The hundreds of Nigerian girls kidnapped by Boko Haram could face a life of misery, as slaves or child brides sold for a pittance in the markets across the globe if they are not rescued soon, humanitarian experts say.
While boys abducted in Nigeria and other war-torn African countries face the misery of a life where they are forced to become beggars, miners or child soldiers, girls like the nearly 300 mainly Christian teens abducted by the Boko Haram last month are more likely to be dispersed throughout the continent, Russia, the Middle East and even Europe, sold for a few dollars and forced to become prostitutes. Some escape, and make it back to their villages, while others are forced into the sex trade and exposed to brutality and disease.
“We can safely assume that the abducted girls have been raped by their captors, if not worse,” Rona Peligal, deputy director for the Africa Division of Human Rights Watch, told FoxNews.com. “If they return home, they could be traumatized and stigmatized if they are known to be raped, pregnant or with child from their abductors. What happens if they’re trafficked would likely pale by comparison.”
According to Red24, a South Africa-based crisis management firm, more than 9,000 children are kidnapped annually in sub-Saharan Africa, with Nigeria accounting for more than two-thirds of them. The vast majority of victims are abducted to become child soldiers, slaves, prostitutes or child brides.
If the girls, who Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is seen gloating on video vowing to sell, are not rescued, they could end up taken to West and Central African countries such as neighboring Chad, Ghana and Cameroon, where ruthless brokers of human lives bid for their bodies at clandestine markets. Some, like Lady Rosaline Tarh, whose plight was chronicled in 2011 by a coalition of humanitarian organizations, don’t get far. She was forced to work as a waitress in a Cameroon restaurant by day, and service up to 10 men per night. When she contracted HIV, she was cast aside.
“Five years later I was tested HIV positive and [her tormentor] sent me away,” she said. “My life is now destroyed because no man can get married to me.”