Boko Haram kills five in attack on reopened highway
18 August 2016, 12:10
Kano - Boko Haram killed five traders in an ambush on a highway in
northeast Nigeria that was recently reopened after coming under repeated attack
from the Islamist group, a military source said on Wednesday.
of vehicles carrying Nigerian immigration officials and a group of traders were
travelling from Gamboru, on the border with Cameroon, to the city of Maiduguri
when they came under fire on Monday.
(immigration) officers were hit and injured in the fire exchange. The
immigration men drove off towards Maiduguri, leaving the traders behind,"
an army officer told AFP on condition of anonymity.
traders had joined the official convoy thinking it would be a safer way to
reach the Borno state capital than travelling the notorious road alone.
traders' two trucks were looted and set alight, Gamboru resident Umar Ari told
AFP by phone, also confirming the toll of five dead.
Strategic link with Cameroon
Gamboru to Maiduguri highway is a strategic 140-kilometre trade route in the region and provides an important link with
highway was closed for safety reasons at the height of the Boko Haram unrest
some two years ago but was reopened by
the Nigerian authorities following a string of successes against the militants.
the Maiduguri-Gamboru highway was reopened two months ago convoys of trucks
carrying goods and other vehicles conveying traders have been coming to Gamboru
under military escort without any incident," said resident Ari.
Haram, which seeks to impose strict Islamic law in northern Nigeria, has been
blamed for some 20 000 deaths and displacing more than 2.6 million people since
counter-offensive spearheaded by Nigeria since January last year has recaptured
swathes of territory lost to the Islamist militants in 2014.
sporadic attacks continue and security remains a major concern in the region.