ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Nigeria's military chiefs and the president are apparently split over how to free nearly 300 schoolgirls abducted by Islamic extremists, with the military saying use of force could get the hostages killed and the president reportedly ruling out a prisoner-hostage swap.
The defense chief, Air Marshal Alex Badeh, announced Monday that the military has located the girls, but offered no details or a way forward. Previous attempts by Nigeria's military to free hostages have led to the prisoners being killed by their abductors.
A human rights activist close to mediators said a swap of detained extremists for the girls was negotiated a week ago but fell through because Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan refused to consider an exchange.
Community leader Pogu Bitrus of Chibok, the town from which the girls were abducted on April 15, says authorities are speaking with "discordant voices," but the president should negotiate for the girls' release.