It has taken a despicable act, the kidnapping more than 200 schoolgirls, for the world to sit up and take notice of the menacing Boko Haram, a militant Islamist group terrorising parts of Nigeria. Sadly the capture of the girls is just one in a long line of terror acts.
Tuesday BBC News reports "The UK, the US, France and China already have teams helping on the ground in Nigeria. An Israeli counter-terrorism team is also on its way." Now the US is deploying manned planes and considering using drones to find the girls. After the lack of success finding missing Flight MH370 we won't hold our breath. It will take time.
Even as the world finally sat up and took notice of the plight of the missing girls more than 350 people were slaughtered when Boko Haram raided a village, destroying it. John Simpson's video report from the region is well worth watching but as he reports that killings last week went almost unreported.
The latest news and images show the girls allegedly converted to Islam They are held in a camp by the extremist group and there have been reports that some have faced forced marriage, and maybe worse.
Their plight is heart-breaking.Finally the west is joining forces to try and free the girls. In the process hitting Boko Haram has to be a priority. Unless the group is eliminated there will be more killings and the reign of terror in this part of Nigeria will continue.
This writer is loath to put any support behind the US campaign to kill suspected terrorists rather than capture and put them on trial but she will not shed any tears over the demise of Boko Haram.
But with so many atrocities under their belts you have to ask why this group was allowed to menace for so long.
TEK's first report on the kidnapped girls was on April 15, when it was believed around 100 girls had been kidnapped. At that time we reported that even before this kidnapping Amnesty International put the death toll so far this year as 1,500. According to Amnesty terrorist action and reprisals by Nigerian forces have both contributed to an increase in killings. They claim that the Nigerian army killed 600 people following a suspected Boko Haram attack last month reported BBC News.
Who is Boko Haram? Boko Haram is a militant extremist group that opposes any political or social activity that may be viewed as Western. This is why women or girls in the process of being educated are sometimes a target. The Islamist group or sect, Boko Haram, was founded by Mohammed Yusuf in 2002 but he was killed by authorities in 2009. The group reformed and in the last few years have escalated violence once again.
It will take more than the elimination of the group's leader to end the menace of Boko Haram but surely they must be eliminated for the sake of the people?