Scores of Nigerian troops missing after Boko Haram ambush

 Lt Gen Tukur Buratai, Nigeria Chief of Army Staff

Lt Gen Tukur Buratai, Nigeria Chief of Army Staff

Scores of Nigerian troops went missing following an ambush by suspected Boko Haram terrorists in Nigeria’s northeastern state of Borno, local media and residents said on Sunday.

 

The soldiers were driving in at least eight trucks when the Boko Haram fighters ambushed their convoy early Saturday at Boboshe village in Bama area of the state, the officials News Agency of Nigeria reported.

 

A reliable source told Xinhua that up to 70 army personnel, including at least five officers, were yet to report at their military bases after the attack.

 

The military source who spoke on condition of anonymity said the Boko Haram fighters in their hundreds ambushed the troops and in the process, many of them have been missing.

 

“It is not clear they have been overpowered and kidnapped,” the source told Xinhua.

 

Only three out of 11 military trucks deployed to Boboshe village returned to their bases after the villagers sent a distress message to the security personnel in the area, added the source.

 

The attacking Boko Haram fighters were believed to have been those who escaped the ongoing offensive by the military to flush out the terrorists in the fringes of Sambisa Forest and Lake Chad region, according to residents.

 

Yusuf Mustapha, a resident, said many villagers fled the area as the terrorists went on the rampage.

 

As of Sunday evening, most villagers had abandoned their homes due to the attack, said Mustapha.

 

Military authorities are yet to issue an official statement on the incident. -Xinhua

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