Islamic State: We Have Killed 11 Soldiers


•As Boko Haram kills four in Borno

Tobi Soniyi and Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri

One week after Islamic State claimed responsibility for the death of 10 soldiers in Borno State, the group yesterday said it had carried out yet another attack in the northeastern state that killed at least 11 soldiers.

In another development yesterday, the Boko Haram attacked Maiduguri and abducted five persons, thereby carting away food items and other valuables.

The Islamic State claimed it killed members of the Nigeria Armed Forces through its news agency, Amaq last night.

According to the information, the insurgent group struck at a barracks in Gajiganna Local Government Area of Borno state, killing 11 soldiers and leaving many injured.

It released pictures of burnt barracks and dead bodies, which it claimed were those of soldiers.

At press time, THISDAY was unable to verify the claim by the group.

Although the army is yet to comment on the attack, an official of the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) said some of the victims of the attack are currently receiving treatment at the hospital.

“We have been attending to the victims of the unfortunate attack from Gajiganna and they are responding to treatment,” said the official who craved anonymity because he was not authorised to speak.

Boko Haram joined Islamic State after Abubakar Shekau, leader of the sect, pledged allegiance to the group in 2015. It, however, split with the group in 2016 over leadership issues.

In March, the IS sacked Abu Mus’ab Al-barnawi as the leader of ISWAP, a faction of Boko Haram.

Ahmad Salkida, a journalist known to have access to the leadership of Boko Haram, said the new leader of the group is Abu Abdullah Ibn Umar Albarnawi.

On the Maiduguri attack, the Boko Haram yesterday attacked Maiduguri and abducted five persons while carting away food items and other valuables.

But four of the five persons abducted were later shot dead about seven kilometres away as the fifth persons was thought to have died but only sustained wounds from the gunshot.

Founder of Bethel Assembly International, Maiduguri, Prophet Sunday Solomon, said the insurgents came into the compound, which has six bungalows, where he resided at Njimtilo, in the outskirts of Maiduguri at about 12.25am.

He said when he heard some movement within the compound, he thought the gate was not locked and came out to check, only to be met by a stranger, who pointed a gun at him and called on others to come in.

Solomon said he took the initiative to lunge at him and immediately left for his apartment, adding that the attacker fired several shots at him but that it was a miracle he survived even without a shot hitting him.

He said they later came into his residence, took food items from the kitchen and mobile phones from his living room. He was surprised that they did not see him and his family where they hid in one of the toilets in the flat.

Another resident, whose flat was not attacked, Peter Ogoleh, said they thought no one was present in his flat when they came as it was locked and everyone was silent.

“I saw them through the window holding a gun at Isaac Dibal, who was sleeping within the compound, because of the heat. They held him at gunpoint with his wife and baby. They took him inside to ransack their home for valuables, which they carted away.”

According to him, they abducted Isaac Dibal and the four other men, who resided in one of the flats in the compound and working on an Airtel installation in Maiduguri.

The insurgents, according to the residents, later lined up the five abducted men about seven kilometers away and shot them.

While four persons died, one person, Abdullahi Kabir, was lucky to only sustain wound and was taken to the Borno State Specialist Hospital by residents of the area to be treated.

Confirming the attack, Bello Dambatta, the Head of Operations, Borno State Emergency Management Agency, said four persons were deposited at the morgue from the attack in Njimtilo by one of the ambulances of the agency.

He said one person that was critically injured is presently on admission at the State Specialist Hospital.