Girls and young women who were kidnapped from a school in Nigeria are reportedly being paid to marry their captors, according to a civic organisation.
Parents say the girls are being given 2,000 naira (£7) to marry Boko Haram militants, according to Halite Aliyu of the Borno-Yobe People's Forum.
“The latest reports are that they have been taken across the borders, some to Cameroon and Chad,” Aliyu said. However, it was not possible to verify the reports regarding more than 200 missing girls who were kidnapped in the northeast by the Boko Haram terrorist network two weeks ago.
“Some of them have been married off to insurgents. A medieval kind of slavery. You go and capture women and then sell them off,” community elder Pogu Bitrus of Chibok, the town where the girls were abducted, told the BBC Hausa Service.
In pictures: Nigeria kidnapped schoolgirls
In pictures: Nigeria kidnapped schoolgirls
A total of 276 girls were abducted from the northeastern town of Chibok, in Borno state, which has a sizeable Christian community. Some 223 are still missing
One of the kidnapped girls looks into a camera
One of the missing girls talking to the camera
The missing Nigerian schoolgirls, wearing the full-length hijab and praying in an undisclosed rural location. Boko Haram alleging they had converted them to Islam
Girls wearing the full-length hijab holding a flag reading "There is no god, but Allah" and "Mohammed is Allah's prophet"
A man claiming to be the leader of Nigerian Islamist extremist group Boko Haram Abubakar Shekau
Abubakar Shekau speaks on the video
Girls, wearing the full-length hijab and praying are filmed by an unidentified man (R) in an undisclosed rural location
People carry signs as they attend a protest demanding the release of abducted secondary school girls in the remote village of Chibok in Lagos
A protester demonstrates against the kidnapping of school girls in Nigeria, outside the Nigerian Embassy in London
Chief International Correspondent Christiane Amanpour and Prime Minister David Cameron appearing on the BBC1 current affairs programme
People participate in a "Bring Back Our Girls" campaign demonstration and candlelight vigil in Los Angeles
Girls holding heart shaped banners in a "Bring Back Our Girls" campaign demonstration and candlelight vigil in Los Angeles
14/19 South Africa
South Africans protest in solidarity against the abduction of hundreds of schoolgirls in Nigeria by the Muslim extremist group Boko Haram and what protesters said was the failure of the Nigerian government and international community to rescue them, during a march to the Nigerian Consulate in Johannesburg
Karilyn Coates (10) joins others in a candlelight vigil for the more than 300 girls abducted by Boko Haram in Nigeria, at All Souls Unitarian Church in Colorado Springs
Mothers of the missing Chibok school girls abducted by Boko Haram Islamists gather to receive informations from officials. Nigeria's president said that Boko Haram's mass abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls would mark a turning point in the battle against the Islamists, as world powers joined the search to rescue the hostages
Former Nigerian Education Minister and Vice-President of the World Bank's Africa division (3rd L) Obiageli Ezekwesilieze speaks as she leads a march of Nigeria women and mothers of the kidnapped girls of Chibok, calling for their freedom in Abuja
18/19 Bring Back Our Girls
Kelly Hoppen tweeted: 'Please make sure you do this, we must stand together and not forget them'
19/19 Bring Back Our Girls
E.L. Rock Star tweeted: 'Join The Movement'
The Borno-Yobe People's Forum was alerted to the alleged mass weddings by residents of the Sambisa Forest, on Nigeria's border with Cameroon, where the terrorist group is known to have hideouts.
The report comes as terrorist network Boko Haram gathered to negotiate the students' fate, and is demanding an unspecified ransom for their release, a Borno state community leader told reporters.
He added that the message released by the abductors on Wednesday included the claim that two of the girls have died from snake bites.
The message was sent to a member of a presidential committee mandated last year to mediate a ceasefire with the Islamic extremists, said the civic leader speaking on a condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to publicly discuss the talks.
As many of the girls remain missing, hundreds of women marched on Wednesday to Nigeria's National Assembly to protest against the lack of action to help being offered the students. Hundreds more also marched in Kano, Nigeria's second city in the north.
“The leaders of both houses said they will do all in their power but we are saying two weeks already have past, we want action now,” said activist Mercy Asu Abang.
Nigerians have harnessed social media to protest, trending under the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.
A federal senator from the region said the military is aware of the movements of the kidnappers and the girls.
“What bothered me the most is that whenever I informed the military where these girls were, after two to three days they were moved from that place to another. Still, I would go back and inform them on new developments,” Sen. Ahmad Zanna is quoted as saying at the Nigerian online news site Persecond News.
Additional reporting by Associated PressReuse content