NBC News Confuses Kenya and Nigeria in Boko Haram Kidnapping Story

By Merrill Knox 

NBC News Boko HaramDuring a report on the Boko Haram kidnapping of 276 teenage girls on “NBC Nightly News” Tuesday, Brian Williams twice said that the abductions took place in Kenya instead of Nigeria.

“Tonight it now feels as if the world is aware and responding to the kidnapping of 276 girls in Kenya three weeks ago today,” Williams said on the broadcast. He went on to reference Kenya a second time during the introduction to Ann Curry’s report on the kidnapping, which led “Nightly” last night.

Curry — who was on set with Williams — correctly identified the kidnapping as taking place in Nigeria during her report. After it aired, Williams called her report a “scary story out of Nigeria.”


“Brian realized his error right away, corrected it two minutes later and for all subsequent feeds,” a spokesperson for “Nightly” told TVNewser. “He wrote the item in question in the rush before airtime — it was an error borne of haste and he felt terrible about it.”

The mistake has been fixed in the version of “Nightly” that is up on NBC’s website.