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Islamic Leaders Condemn Kidnapping of Nigerian Schoolgirls

Nigerian-Muslim Association: Boko Haram’s actions don’t represent the teachings of Islam.

The Maryknoll House near Rice University was packed with people of many faiths, but all were united in their concern for the safety of more than 200 school girls abducted by the group April 15.

Shakir Olakukon with the Nigerian-Muslim Association of Greater Houston says the actions by Boko Haram are not representative of the teachings of Islam.

“Not only do we detest these barbaric and inhuman acts, but we also state that they are unislamic and oppressive,” he said.

Sister Ceil Roeger of the Dominican order says it’s been learned that the group is not planning to sell the girls, but their safety is still a concern.

“The statement is not an attempt to minimize the crime against humanity that has been perpetrated, and we are in no manner minimizing the danger that the girls are in,” she said.

Mustafah Carroll is executive director of the Houston chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, which organized the gathering. He says Boko Haram’s actions toward the girls are difficult to interpret.

“That’s the million dollar question, but the bottom line is that these girls need to be back home. I don’t care what, we don’t care what the reason is,” he said.

The British and French governments announced that they would assist U.S. officials heading to Nigeria to help with the search for the girls.

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