The Nigerian army on Friday declared it is in control of Baga town, one of the strongholds of terror group Boko Haram in the northeastern part of the country.
This is contrary to earlier local media reports that the terror group overran the area following a gunfight with security forces late Wednesday.
Maj.-Gen. Lamidi Adeosun, chief of training and operations of the army, confirmed to reporters in Maiduguri, capital of the northeastern state of Borno, that Boko Haram launched a coordinated attack on a military base in Baga town on that day.
Adeosun said troops, however, successfully repelled the Boko Haram attack and secured Baga and its environs.
“Baga is not in the hands of the Boko Haram; I repeat, Baga is not in the hands of the Boko Haram terrorists, they contested and lost,” the army general said.
Earlier, local media reports had indicated that Boko Haram had overrun and hoisted their flags in the fishing town on Nigeria’s border with Chad and Niger. Locals reportedly fled the area due to the situation.
Army spokesman Sani Usman told Xinhua that one military personnel was killed during the attack.
In January 2015, a series of mass killings were carried out by the Boko Haram group in Baga and its environs after the terrorists took a military base that was the headquarters of the Multinational Joint Task Force containing troops from Chad, Niger and Nigeria.
The Nigerian Ministry of Defence claimed that no more than 150 people in total were killed in the Baga massacre of 2015.
Boko Haram has been trying since 2009 to establish an Islamic state in northeastern Nigeria, killing some 20,000 people and forcing the displacement of millions of others. Enditem