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At least 344 students were released by their kidnappers in northwestern Nigeria , a local official from Katsina state said Thursday.

“We have 344 students, they are being tested in Zamfara. We thank God for their release,” said Ibrahim Katsina, advisor to the local governor.

Earlier, a counselor to President Muhammadu Buhari had announced the release of the students, although he did not specify how many.

Hundreds of minors and teenagers were abducted Friday night by gunmen, nicknamed “bandits”, in this region of Nigeria. The victims were abducted from the Kankara state children’s high school in Katsina state , in an abduction that was later claimed by the jihadist group Boko Haram , which nevertheless usually operates in the northeast of the country.

According to Kankara officials, almost 500 teenagers were released this Thursday, although two officers said that it was actually 320 or 333.

“No one can give the exact figure,” a security source told AFP. The released students are located in the city of Tsafe, in the state of Zamfara, and in the neighboring town of Yankara, in the state of Katsina.

“We will have the precise figure when they arrive and a count is made in Katsina,” added the same source.

On Thursday, Boko Haram jihadists released a video of young people whom they identified as the abducted students.

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