Boko Haram terrorists recapture key Nigerian town
Iran Press TV
Sat May 16, 2015 1:31PM
Boko Haram Takfiri terrorists have recaptured Nigeria's northeastern town of Marte after a series of violent clashes with the West African country's army, local officials say.
Mustapha Zannah, the vice governor of Nigeria's restive Borno State, confirmed early on Saturday that the strategic town had fallen into the hands of the Boko Haram militant group.
"It is sad as we have been made to understand that Marte has today completely fallen under the control of the insurgents, which to us is a very huge setback," Zannah said.
The key town is located along a strategic trading route between Nigeria and neighboring Cameroon and Chad. The town has traded hands between the militants and government troops numerous times since 2013.
The militant group recently killed at least 55 people in two separate raids on villages near Maiduguri in Borno.
A regional military coalition of Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon has claimed a series of major victories against Boko Haram since launching sweeping offensives against the militant group in February.
Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is forbidden," controls parts of northeastern Nigeria and says its goal is to overthrow the Nigerian government.
It has claimed responsibility for a number of deadly shooting attacks and bombings in various parts of Nigeria since the beginning of its activities in 2009. Boko Haram's six-year militancy has claimed 15,000 lives and displaced about 1.5 million people.
The Boko Haram militant group recently pledged allegiance to the ISIL terrorist group, which is mainly operating in Iraq and Syria.
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