Many persons were feared dead on Tuesday evening following heavy explosion and gun duel between Boko Haram insurgents and security operatives in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
The number of casualties could not be immediately ascertained, but eye witness accounts indicated that the insurgents tried to launch an attack on the University of Maiduguri from the military trench behind the university.
Residents said the attack caused pandemonium around settlements like Mairi, Kaleri and Constein which share fence with the University.
Residents of Kaleri confirmed that explosions were being detonated within the area but could not ascertain if there were fatalities. “People are just running in no direction. The explosions were coming from our area. What I cannot say is if people have died,” the source said.
In its own account, the Nigerian army said it has recaptured Marte, an area in Borno state, from the hold of suspected terrorists. Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima, made this known in a statement titled, “Troops recovered Marte killing scores of Boko Haram terrorists/Islamic State in West African Province terrorists”, on Tuesday.
The statement read, “Troops of Nigerian Army troops this afternoon, around 3 pm, recovered New Marte and adjoining communities from the devilish Boko Haram terrorists.
“This is coming less than the 48 hours directive earlier given to the troops to recover the town by the Chief of Army Staff, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru. “The troops backed by air cover from the Nigerian Air force, successfully charged through Marte town, destroying several Improvised Explosive Device and landmines laced across their routes and killing scores of Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and successfully recovered the town. The gallant troops are currently in total control of the general area.”
The Chief of Army Staff, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru, had given a 48-hour ultimatum to the troops of the Nigerian Army to clear Boko Haram from captured areas of Borno State.
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