Suspected Boko Haram jihadists have overrun a military base and looted a nearby town in northeast Nigeria, security sources and residents said Tuesday, the latest such attack in the restive region.
The raids came a day after 30 people were killed on Sunday in a triple suicide bombing in the region that also bore the hallmarks of Boko Haram.
Late on Monday assailants, arriving on nine armoured trucks, stormed into the military base outside the town of Gajiram, 80 kilometres (50 miles), north of the Borno state capital Maiduguri.
They were suspected to be from IS-affiliated Boko Haram faction known as the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).
“They dislodged troops from the base after a fight,” a security source told AFP.
“We don’t know the extent of damage and looting in the base. An assessment is being carried out”.
It was not immediately clear if there were any casualties.
Residents said the Islamists drove into the town after sacking the base and looted shops, shooting into the air.
Their presence forced residents to flee into the bush while others shut themselves in their homes.
“The gunmen drove into the town around 6pm (1700GMT) after overpowering soldiers in the base,” Gajiram resident Mele Butari told AFP.
“They stayed for almost five hours. They broke into the shops and looted food supplies and provisions,” he said.
“They didn’t hurt anyone and they made no attempt to attack people who fled into the bush or hid indoors”.
Soldiers were seen returning to the town from the bush Tuesday morning