Dogara Bitrus

Marte town has been overrun by suspected members of the Boko Haram sect and Islamic State West Africa Province.

The incident happened at about 5.30pm on Friday and the armed men were still holding the town as of Saturday, forcing security agents and civilians to flee.

The town is located on the fringes of Lake Chad Basin, an area occupied by the insurgents.

According to a military source, 90 per cent of the over 300 households that returned to the town in December 2020 have been displaced by the attack,.

“90 per cent of the IDPs who returned in December have fled the town as a result of the recent attack. They have fled to nearby Dikwa  and Maiduguri. As we speak, the insurgents are  holding the place,” the military source said.

A police source also said, “Soldiers fled the town too, same with the policemen that were deployed here in early December. They are all in Dikwa.”

In a related development, five soldiers and one officer were killed by landmines in Chibok Local Government Area of the state. Fifteen others sustained injuries after the landmines planted by Boko Haram insurgents explanation.

The affected soldiers are men of 117 Battalion.

A senior military officer disclosed this to our correspondent.

Meanwhile, a statement by Operation Turi Takai Bango indicated that the air taskforce component of Operation Lafiya Dole destroyed seven gun trucks belonging to the insurgents and decimated a large number of the insurgents as they attempted to attack the the military in the outskirts of Marte.

The statement, which was signed by Brig. Gen Bernard Onyeuko, read, “The gallant troops, based on reliable information about the attack, had positioned themselves in an ambush site where they tactically withdrew to and awaited the arrival of the terrorists before they opened fire, which led to a fierce battle that resulted in the successes recorded as indicated above.

“The troops are still engaged in pursuit of the fleeing terrorists for further exploitation.”

Copyright PUNCH.

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