Boko Haram in Gun Battle With Security Forces

Boko Haram in Gun Battle With Security Forces

"Following an intelligence report, it was gathered that Aminu has concluded plans with his cohorts in Bauchi, Borno, Yobe and Nasarawa states to launch a major attack on innocent citizens in Benue State", the statement by the Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, 707 Special Forces Brigade in Makurdi, Olabisi Olalekan Ayeni, read in part.

At least five bodies of Boko Haram suicide bombers have been identified and evacuated, while four other corpses of residents have been deposited at the mortuary.

Militants of dreaded Boko Haram sect are now engaging the troops of the Nigerian Army in a gun duel in what seems like a heavy siege on Maiduguri, the Borno state capital. Eleven people were killed.

The government has been saying since December 2015 that the jihadist group has been defeated but high profile attacks in the last few months - including the kidnap of 111 schoolgirls from the town of Dapchi and a strike in the town of Rann that killed three aid workers - has shown the jihadists remain active.

"They were at the cashew plantation axis of Maiduguri but soldiers engaged them in a serious battle", he said. Normalcy has been restored in the area.

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Okon added that preemptive deployments were being put in place to forestall further surprise attack. "Nigerian Army encourages all law-abiding citizens to go about their lawful businesses without fear".

Troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE with the support of the Air Task Force, Nigerian Police Force, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and other security agencies including the Civilian Joint Task Force quickly mobilised to the area and cleared the terrorists incursion.

Hundreds of residents who fled the area Thursday night were returning home by the following morning, according to a Reuters journalist at the scene. While residents have been urged to always promptly report suspicious persons and activities to the security agencies for prompt action.

"We made a decision to flee when the sound of the gunshots was getting close to us".

"We don't know why we were asked not to carry guns again, and now that the attack was brought to us, most of us were helplessly watching the attackers harming our people", said one of the civilian-JTF operatives, who identified himself simply as Banga.

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