Twenty-eight students have been released after being abducted by armed kidnappers in Nigeria earlier this month.
According to CBN News, more than 120 students were taken from the Bethel Baptist High School in Damishi, Nigeria, on July 5. Including the 28 students who were released, a total of 34 have either been released or escaped.
The students have been returned to their parents.
The kidnappers have reportedly demanded 500,000 Naira, or about $1,200, for each student.
Rev. Israel Akanji, president of the Baptist Convention, however, said the church did not pay the ransom fees, but he added that some families may be paying the demands.
Mohammed Jalige, a spokesman for the Nigerian Police, said security forces and civilian defense forces found three of the kidnapped students roaming in the forest near the village of Tsohon Gaya.
Two other students escaped last week when they were ordered to find firewood.
Jalige said the students are all undergoing medical examinations.
The abduction at Bethel Baptist High School was the fourth kidnapping of students in the Kaduna State in about six months.
Following the kidnapping, the Kaduna State Schools Quality Assurance Authority ordered the shutdown of 13 Nigerian schools to prevent more abductions.
In June, 100 gunmen attacked a Nigerian college, killing one police officer and a student and abducting four teachers and 70 students.
Earlier this year, in February, hundreds of girls were abducted from the Government Secondary Jangebe School in Zamfara state during a raid.
Most notably, the Boko Haram extremist group drew worldwide attention after the terrorist group abducted nearly 270 girls from a school in Chibok, Borno State in Nigeria.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has encouraged schools to increase security. He has also said he condemns the abductions.
“The President reiterated his earlier advice to school owners particularly, the state and local governments as well as religious organizations to scale up security around their schools … and directed all security and intelligence agencies in the country to hunt down the culprits and bring them to justice,” a statement from Buhari in February said.
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Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.