Boko Haram: Niger kills 280, Nigeria loses five
Niger Republic claims to have killed more than 280 Boko Haram terrorists after the group seized towns and military bases in neighbouring Nigeria last month. This is happening at a time Nigeria lost five Airforce men and a war chopper in crash following aerial attacks on the extremists’ bases.
Niger’s defence ministry said 200 militants have been killed in airstrikes since December 28, while another 87 have been killed by ground troops.
Niger has yet to suffer any casualties of its own, according to the ministry.
Boko Haram – an Islamic extremist group – seized several towns including the commercial outpost of Baga near the borders with Cameroon, Chad, and Niger on December 28.
Troops at a multinational joint taskforce base were also forced into a ‘tactical retreat’, Nigeria said.
Terrorists also seized control of tanks, boats and a large cache of weapons during the raid.
Niger launched the attack on December 28 after Boko Haram seized several villages and a joint military base in Nigeria’s north east (pictured, a village damaged by the terror group in Nigeria) +2
Niger launched the attack on December 28 after Boko Haram seized several villages and a joint military base in Nigeria’s north east (pictured, a village damaged by the terror group in Nigeria)
The attack came after Nigeria warned in November about what it called an ‘extremist resurgence’ fueled by the new use of drones.
Niger’s defense minister last month said he feared Boko Haram would launch renewed attacks from January, when the Komadougou-Yobe river which usually prevents border incursions begins to recede.
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari will also be seeking a second term in office at elections in February, prompting the militants into action.
Buhari came to power in 2015, partly on a promise to defeat Boko Haram.