Five civilians were killed in fighting between government troops and Boko Haram militants in northeastern Nigeria, locals and civilian militia said Sunday. The deaths happened in the town of Buni Yadi, in Yobe State, on Saturday, in an attack that the military said also killed five militants and four soldiers.
Army spokesman Sagir Musa said five militants “met their Waterloo” as they attempted to overrun a military base at about 6:00 pm (1700 GMT) on Saturday. At about the same time, there were attacks on military positions in Gajibo and Gajiganna, north of the Borno State capital, Maiduguri, security sources in the city said.
In Buni Yadi, local resident Aisami Lawan told AFP, “The attackers came around 5:30 pm. The fighting lasted more than two hours. A stray projectile hit one of the houses nearby, killing all five occupants. Eleven people were also injured from stray bullets and shrapnel.”
The five civilians who were killed were buried on Sunday morning, he added. A member of the Civilian Joint Task Force militia assisting the military with security confirmed the account and said Boko Haram militants were killed after the attack.
“When the terrorists turned back, a detachment of CJTF was waiting and laid ambush to them,” he added. “An officer and three soldiers have lost their lives during the encounter,” he said, adding that five others were wounded.
Musa said the heavily-armed militants were in four gun trucks and two armored vehicles. Troops seized weapons and ammunition, he added. The military base in Buni Yadi has been targeted before in the conflict.