Boko Haram has allegedly abducted dozens more girls in northeast Nigeria, damaging hopes of a ceasefire agreement with the Government.
The latest kidnappings took place during a large-scale assault by the insurgent group on two villages in the lawless Adamawa state, according to residents.
The attacks on the villages of Waga Mangoro and Garta happened last Saturday - a day after the Nigerian Government claimed to have brokered a truce with the group.
Government officials said the truce was expected to lead to the freeing of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram from a school in the town of Chibok, also in northeast Nigeria, in April. But doubts have since been expressed about the credibility of the intermediary who was said to have brokered the deal.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
The latest abduction is one of a series of further mass kidnappings that the group has carried out as part of its terror campaign, in which it has also massacred hundreds of people at a time.
Police have not yet confirmed details of the kidnapping, but locals who spoke to the BBC say most of those taken were teenagers or in their early twenties.
News of the abductions came as Nigerian parliamentarians approved a US$1 billion ($1.275 billion) loan - requested by the President in July - to upgrade military equipment and train more units fighting the north-eastern insurgency.
The latest reports of a ceasefire deal follow a number of previous claims by Nigerian officials that an end was in sight to the Chibok schoolgirls' ordeal, either through secret deals or imminent rescue operations. All such claims have so far proved unfounded.
Privately, British officials are sceptical that the girls will ever be released, pointing out that a rescue operation is considered impossible because of the risk of casualties, and that Nigeria's Western allies would not approve of its Government doing a prisoner swap with such a bloodthirsty group.