MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — The leader of a vigilante fighter group in Nigeria says Boko Haram militants have killed about 45 people in an attack on a village.
Muhammed Gava of the Nigeria Vigilante Group said the assault occurred Wednesday in Azaya Kura village in northeastern Nigeria’s Borno state. He told The Associated Press on Thursday that the heavily armed Boko Haram militants surged through the village in several trucks, destroying houses and carting away food and livestock.
Shettima Lawan, a local politician, mourned the attack, telling the AP: “I am still searching for motives behind the mass killing and destruction.”
The village is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from Maiduguri, the capital of Borno. The state has been hit the hardest by Boko Haram’s five-year insurgency.
The militants continue to pursue their aim to carve out an “Islamic caliphate” under their black and white flag. Last week, Boko Haram fighters captured Chibok town, where more than 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped six months ago. Nigeria’s army recaptured Chibok on Saturday.
At least 1.5 million people have fled their homes since Nigeria declared a state of emergency in May 2013, according to U.N. figures.
(An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Maiduguri is the capital of Nigeria.)