On Tuesday, the city of Damaturu in northeast Nigeria was reportedly attacked by Boko Haram, according to locals who stated that the assailants entered the city through Maisandari, a nearby settlement.
Maisandari residents recounted the attackers shooting upon entering through the eastern part of the settlement. The attackers were seen riding in multiple vehicles with anti-aircraft guns attached.
“Residents and businesses all closed as we fled into the city to avoid being caught up in the attack. While fleeing into the city, I saw truckloads of soldiers heading to Maisandari,” one Maisandari resident, Adamu Sani, said.
Boko Haram members entered Damaturu at about 5:00 p.m. local time. Yusuf Maina said that “an exchange of gunfire” could still be heard an hour later and that residents were advised to remain indoors while soldiers engaged with the attackers.
The soldiers were able to take control of the situation and successfully repel the infiltrators.
Damaturu, which is the Yobe State capital, experienced a series of attacks by the Boko Haram in 2014.
In a raid on Dec. 1, some 150 people were killed in attacks; and about six months later, 21 football fans who were watching the World Cup at a public location were killed by a bomb attack orchestrated by the organization.
This attack comes days after the evacuation of about 2,000 people from the Jakana village, which is about 90 kilometers from Damaturu. The National Emergency Management Agency said the action was “a result of ongoing operations to flush out insurgents in the area.”
In the last few weeks, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon have been conducting several military offensives against the terrorist organization, through intensive air and ground operations.
Boko Haram has reportedly killed over 27,000 people and displaced 1.8 million.