Tags: Nigeria | Boko Haram

Boko Haram Kills 31 Nigerian Troops, Policemen

Tuesday, 27 May 2014 03:46 PM

Boko Haram gunmen attacked a Nigerian military base and adjacent police barracks in the northeastern town of Buni Yadi, killing 31 security personnel, security sources and witnesses said Tuesday.

The attack late on Monday in Yobe state occurred not far from where the Islamist terrorists shot or burned to death 59 pupils at a boarding school in February.

The militants, whose violent struggle for an Islamic state in northern Nigeria has killed thousands and made them the biggest threat to security in Africa's top oil-producing state, are still holding more than 200 girls kidnapped on April 14, an act that provoked international outrage.

Yobe police spokesman Nansak Chegwam said he was aware of the attack but could provide no further details.

A resident of Buni Yadi, who identified himself only as Mustafa for fear of retribution, said the terrorists arrived in an armored personnel carrier and six Toyota pickup trucks before dismounting and firing into the air.

They launched rocket propelled grenades at both bases.

A senior security source in Yobe state said the gunmen killed 17 soldiers and 14 police officers.

In what has become rare for a movement that has killed thousands of civilians in the past year, Boko Harm called out to people on the street not to run away as they had only come for the security forces, Mustafa and the security source said.

The insurgents also razed the police barracks, the army base, the high court and residence of district head Abba Hassan.

"One was shouting in English to the others: 'Let's go, let's go. Finish this and let's go'," said a policeman who escaped the attack and fled to the state capital Damturu.

 

From being a religious movement opposed to Western culture, Boko Haram has emerged as a well armed, fully fledged insurrection.

A military offensive launched a year ago against Boko Haram, which initially seemed to be working, appears to have left the group stronger than ever. The insurgents occupy a vast, hilly terrain along the border with Cameroon, from where they have repeatedly launched devastating hit and run strikes.

Nigeria and its neighbours say Boko Haram now threatens the security of the whole region.

Cameroon has deployed armored vehicles and about 1,000 troops to its border region with Nigeria to counter the rising threat.

Chief of Defense Staff Air Marshal Alex Badeh said on Tuesday the military knew where the abducted girls were but ruled out using force to rescue them for fear of endangering their lives.

On Tuesday the United States said it did not have independent information to confirm Nigeria's claim to know the whereabouts of kidnapped girls.

© 2017 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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Africa
Nigeria, Boko Haram
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2014-46-27
Tuesday, 27 May 2014 03:46 PM
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