Nigerian army supported by the country’s air force on Monday 18th April 2016 manged to repel a major would be attack by Boko Haram insurgents near the country’s border with Niger. Nigeria northeast region is jihadist heartland according to the country military officials.
Boko Haram which pledged allegiance to the self-proclaimed and emir of the Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been fighting for the last seven years in an effort to establish an Islamist caliphate in Nigeria and the neighbouring countries.
The militancy conflict has left more than 2 million people displaced and many killed.
According to a military source, the militant group fighters clashed with troops on their way to border town of Damasak where they intended to establish as permanent base.
The army took the area back from Boko Haram last year, but the militants are persistent to hold it back.
"The Nigerian troops have successfully repelled an attack by Boko Haram terrorists who attempted an incursion into (the) 113 Battalion," army spokesman Sani Usman said in a statement.
During the clash, fierce fighting erupted with Nigerian forces killing over two dozen militants while other militants reportedly fled after being overpowered. At least 22 soldiers also sustained injuries, Usman said without giving further details.
Boko Haram recently has stepped up cross-border attacks and suicide bombings against markets, bus stations and places of worship but Nigerian forces have also been able pacify key areas which have been under their control.