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Australia plans to ban Nigeria's Boko Haram as terrorist group after schoolgirls kidnapped

Australia is taking steps to ban as a terrorist organization Boko Haram, the militant group that kidnapped nearly 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott told Parliament on Wednesday that a ban would be consistent with the actions of allies including the United States, Britain, Canada and New Zealand.

Abbott said "millions of Australians have been absolutely transfixed and horrified by the hostage taking."

Protesters marched through the streets of the Nigerian capital, Abuja, on Tuesday to demand more government action to find and free the girls, who are believed to be held in the vast Sambisi forest, about 30 kilometers (20 miles) from the eastern town of Chibok, where they were seized from their school on April 15.