8 September 2014
The Nigerian army has recaptured the northeastern town of Bama from Boko Haram Takfiri militants and blocked their advance towards Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state.
A government official said on Monday that the militants had been driven out of Bama, located 70 kilometers (45 miles) southeast of Maiduguri.”Bama has been recaptured by the soldiers and I can confirm to you Maiduguri is safe,” the official stated.The government forces are also fighting a southwards push into neighbouring Adamawa state by Boko Haram, said the unnamed official added.
A number of residents and businessmen from Bama also confirmed
that soldiers were in control of the flashpoint town. Thousands of civilians have fled the recent offensive by the Takfiri group.
Meanwhile, the key northeastern town of Michika has been
captured by Boko Haram, the fleeing residents said. People fled into bushes as gunfire rang out in the town which had been under attack since Sunday, they added.
On Saturday, the militants took Gulak,an administrative headquarters of Adamawa state as the nearby towns of Duhu,Shuwa and Kirshinga fell in assaults over Friday night and Saturday, witnesses said.
Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a number of deadly attacks in Nigeria since the beginning of its armed militancy in 2009. Over 10,000 people have so far been killed in the assaults.The Takfiri group — whose name means “Western education is forbidden” — says its goal is to overthrow the Nigerian government.