Nigerian army rescues 157 people kidnapped by Boko Haram

Soldiers have rescued 157 adults and children kidnapped by Islamist extremist group Boko Haram in northern Nigeria, an army spokesman said on Wednesday.

The people were rescued in the village of Gombori in Borno State on Monday, according to spokesman Sani Usman.

An further 79 people were rescued from the nearby Ngwalimiri village, but the military was not yet able to confirm that they had been abducted by Boko Haram, the spokesman said.

Close to 80 insurgents, among them women and children, surrendered during Monday's raids on Gombori, Ngwalimiri and other villages in area, Usman said. Several terrorists were also killed during the operation.

Various communities in the north-east of Nigeria have come under attack from Boko Haram militants, which have also launched offensives in neighbouring Chad, Niger and Cameroon. The group's goal is to enforce a strict interpretation of Islamic law, known as sharia.

Since 2009, at least 14,000 people have died at the hands of the Sunni fundamentalists in Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger. According to the United Nations, an estimated 2.7 million people in the region have fled their homes due to Boko Haram.

Last update: Wed, 01/06/2016 - 18:22
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