News / Africa

Nigerian Islamists Kill 18, Burn Houses in Northeast

Sate of Borno, Nigeria
Sate of Borno, Nigeria
Reuters
Islamist militants stormed a village in remote northeast Nigeria on Monday, torching houses and spraying them with bullets in an attack that killed 18 people, witnesses said.

The latest Boko Haram assault, on Sunday night, came hours before Nigeria's four top military chiefs handed over to fresh commanders in a ceremony on Monday.

President Goodluck Jonathan announced the reshuffle of his entire military leadership last week in a bid to reinvigorate the fight against the insurgents.

“Most of those who survived the attack have fled the village as they do not know if they will be attacked again,” said Bulama Ibrahim, the chief of Alau Ngawo village, which was attacked sometime after 10 p.m. on Sunday. He said he had counted 18 bodies after the shooting and many houses burned.

A former local councilor, Mustapha Galtimare, who was on the scene after the attack, concurred with the numbers of dead.

The village lies in remote northeastern Borno state, the epicenter of the insurgency and relic of Nigeria's oldest medieval Islamic caliphate, which once prospered from trans-Saharan trade routes passing though the largely Muslim north.

Boko Haram is fighting to re-establish an Islamic kingdom in northern Nigeria, breaking away from the largely Christian south. Its fighters have killed thousands of people since they launched an uprising in mid-2009.

“They had been in the village for nearly two hours without any security personnel coming to the aid of the villagers,” Ibrahim said.

A military spokesman in Borno state, Colonel Muhammadu Dole, said he was aware of the attack but had no details.

Jonathan declared a state of emergency in the northeast last May and ordered in extra troops and air strikes on Islamist bases. It appeared to quell the violence at first, but as is often the case, the insurgents reemerged from the shadows and are now more open in their targeting of civilians.

Boko Haram remains the most serious security headache to Africa's top oil producer and second biggest economy, although the military offensive has squeezed them into smaller pockets along the Cameroon border.

On Dec. 2 Boko Haram gunmen stormed the air force base and military barracks around the airport of the northeastern city of Maiduguri. The group was also blamed for a car bomb in the city this week that killed 29 people.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
January 21, 2014 1:44 PM
That is a welcome party for the service chiefs. It is one thing to hide behind the need to fight insurgency to settle political scores by changing service chiefs; it is another for the service chiefs in whom much reliance has been reposed to deliver. In Nigeria it is common to mask intentions in any guise and make excuses for failure, blaming anything. Boko haram says welcome to the new service chiefs and president Jonathan. Nigerians want the ousting of these miscreants in order to live in peace and security. Let the president be bold once again to make arrests of those who have been accused of supporting this insurgency. Giving them much more time only shows a weakness to rule the country and accords the insider traitors opportunities to make plans how the insurgency can go on if they get arrested. Surprise should have settled it then, now it is too late to talk about surprise, but a bold step to tell the people to their faces, "I know it is you." But imagine that lives are lost and someone is busy playing politics of another term in office!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid