The Islamist extremist group Boko Haram has said it was behind the kidnapping of hundreds of school pupils in north-west Nigeria. The announcement represents a worrying sign that the jihadist group has extended its influence in the region. According to BBC Africa, in a four-minute audio message, a man claiming to be Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, said the attack was against western education. Children as young as 10 years are among those missing. The governor of Katsina state has said 333 boys are still unaccounted for, but they’re in negotiations to rescue the pupils.