Boko Haram militants in Nigeria have launched an attack on a military base in the northeast of the African country, killing at least six soldiers.
Reports said on Wednesday that the fatalities had occurred a day earlier, when the militants, arriving in six pick-up trucks, raided the base in Sasawa Village, some 45 kilometers from the northeastern Yobe State capital, Damaturu.
“There was an attack by Boko Haram terrorists on a military location in Sasawa Village, which led to casualties on both sides,” Colonel Kayode Ogunsanya, a provincial military official, said, without offering specifics.
Local sources said that the members of the Takfiri outfit then moved into the village — whose residents had fled amid the fighting at the base — and looted food.
“They (Boko Haram) loaded grains from the recent harvest into the pick-up trucks and moved toward Kareto and Magumeri in neighboring Borno State,” said Aisami Gremaha, a local resident, adding that the crops left out to dry on farms outside a nearby village were also set on fire.
Last week, at least three soldiers were killed and five others injured in an ambush by the Takfiri militants near the town of Damboa in the restive Borno State.
Boko Haram has been largely pushed out of its main strongholds in northern Nigeria, according to the country’s military and government. The group, however, is still active in its Sambisa Forest enclave in the state and launches sporadic attacks on civilians and security forces from there.
The Nigerian military launched renewed counter-terrorism offensives after the end of the rainy season in northeastern Nigeria in September. Those offensives have diminished Boko Haram’s capacity to launch attacks, but the government warns that the group can still attack civilians at “soft” targets such as mosques, markets, and camps for displaced people.
Thousands have been killed and hundreds of thousands have been displaced as a result of eight years of Boko Haram militancy, which has also affected Nigeria’s neighbors, including Niger, Cameroon, and Chad.