Boko Haram not in control of Baga town - Army

Nigeria Air Force Officers

Nigeria Air Force Officers

"The case of Baga in Kukawa local government area is one of those cases where words merchants have so chose to mislead members of the unsuspecting public to believe that the town is under the control of Boko Haram terrorists". -Gen. Lamidi Adeosun, the Chief of Training and Operations disclosed on the sidelines of a news conference in Maiduguri.

A top military intelligence officer told PRNigeria that the Nigerian Airforce sustained the aerial bombardments after a tactical withdrawal of troops from the military base.

"The troops along with their Nigerian Navy counterparts put up a very determined fight" all night, he said, adding that one navy personnel was killed.

The army, in a statement signed by its director of public relations, Sani Usman, said reinforcements from Sector 3, Operation Lafiya Dole, are in hot pursuit of the terrorists while a search-and-rescue team has been constituted.

On Thursday, insurgents attacked the headquarters of the 7 brigade multinational joint task force (MNJTF) at Baga and hoisted their flag in the town.

Fighters in several vehicles stormed Baga and engaged troops in intense fighting at the MNJTF base which hosts units from Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

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However, reports coming from credible sources indicate that Boko Haram terrorists may have taken control of Baga town, following series of heated battle with Nigerian soldiers.

"The troops were overpowered and forced to withdraw", the source, adding that "the terrorists carted away guntrucks, ammunition and multiple rocket launchers from the base".

Troops from the two bases withdrew to another naval base at Fish Dam on the shores of Lake Chad, the military source said.

"The North East Coalition Against Terrorism commends the military for the sustained war against Boko Haram terrorists in northeast Nigeria in the past three years and the numerous achievements it has recorded within that period particularly throughout the festive season".

The fighters identified themselves as being members of the Islamic State's West Africa Province (Iswap), an IS affiliate which has distanced itself from Boko Haram, the main insurgent group in north-eastern Nigeria.

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