NIGERIAN TRIBUNE (Nigeria), BBC WORLD NEWS (UK), REUTERS
BAMA– Suspected members of the Islamist sect Boko Haram have killed 55 people during a raid on the Nigerian town of Bama, the military reported Wednesday.
Around 200 armed members of the rebel group laid siege on this remote town in a predawn raid Tuesday, and attacked official buildings, including the police station, army barracks and the prison, military spokesman Sagir Musa told Reuters.
During this five-hour raid, the gunmen freed 105 prisoners and killed 55 people, in what is described by Reuters as one of the rebels’ most deadly attacks since 2009.
Among the 55 people killed during the attack were 22 police officers and 14 prison officials. According the police commander in Bama “three children and a woman were also burnt to death,” and 13 members of Boko Haram died, the Nigerian Tribune reports.
The Boko Haram sect is known to be based in this north-eastern region of Nigeria called Borno state, and their attacks often happen in this area. They seek to overthrow the government and implement an Islamic state, the BBC explains.
Last month the Nigerian military launched a raid to hunt down militants in Borno state, after Boko Haram militants attacked a military patrol, the BBC adds. The army was accused of using excessive force as 200 people died and thousands of buildings were destroyed.