Remarks of DCM Maria Brewer for Candlelight Vigil (May 14, 2014)

Good Evening. I’m Maria Brewer, the Deputy Chief of Mission for the U.S. Mission to Nigeria. I’m here tonight as both a representative of the United States of America, and as a mother. The American people send you our thoughts and prayers for the safe return of our girls. I say our girls because all of us are daughters and sons, sisters and brothers. We stand with you, and we offer you our fullest support.

When children are victimized by senseless, evil acts, the many boundaries we divide ourselves by-tribe, religion, nationality-lose their significance. Instead, we focus on our unity. While it’s easy, and understandable, to be angry about this terrible situation, our best chance to bring back our girls is to set aside our differences, unite, and send a message: we’re in this together. And we’re not backing down.

I’m inspired by your spirit of hope and optimism, and encouraged by your peaceful vigil. We will continue to do everything in our power to help the Government of Nigeria bring our girls back.

Thank you.