US begins flying missions to track abducted girls

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he United States has begun  flying “manned” missions over Nigeria to track down more than 200 abducted schoolgirls as experts pored over a new video seeking clues to where they are being held, a report by AFP said.The missions, which commenced on Monday, involve the use of aircraft, including drones, to find the abducted teenage girls.

“We have shared commercial satellite imagery with the Nigerians and are flying manned ISR (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) assets over Nigeria with the government’s permission,” a senior administration official told AFP,  asking not to be named.

It was not immediately clear what kinds of aircraft were being deployed, nor where they had come from.

Also, a new video released by the Boko Haram group purportedly showing about 130 of the girls was being carefully studied by American experts in the hope it might yield vital clues as to where the girls are being held.

“Our intelligence experts are combing through every detail of the video for clues that might help ongoing efforts to secure the release of the girls,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

“We have no reason to question its authenticity,” she added of the video.

Psaki recalled that the US policy was also “to deny kidnappers the benefits of their criminal acts, including ransoms or concessions.”

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