The Guardian reports that the hours of fighting led to heavy casualties of both Muslim extremist and Nigerian forces, as well as civilians. One official said that the conflict forced 5,000 people out of the homes in Bama, a town 45 miles from the Borno state capital of Maiduguri.
The conflict was chaotic, and Nigerian forces mistakenly killed some of their own troops in an airstrike that targeted insurgents at the Bama armoury. Boko Haram members had stormed the armoury with tanks.
Bama resident Bukar Auwalu fled with his family
and survived the attack. He said, "When we started hearing gunshots, everybody was confused. There was firing from different directions. We just ran to the outskirts of town. There were military helicopters and a fighter jet. We slept in the bush on the outskirts of town."
Publication date: September 2, 2014