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Nigeria village attack leaves scores dead

At least 50 people killed in attack, which authorities suspect was committed by armed group Boko Haram.

Last updated: 16 Feb 2014 20:57
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Almost 100 people were killed in Boko Haram's attack on a Catholic church last month [AP]

Dozens of villagers have been shot dead and others have had their throats cut during an attack in northeast Nigeria, survivors said.

Maina Ularamu, a local government chairman, told the AP news agency on Sunday he had received reports that more than 50 people were killed in Saturday night's attack on Izghe village in Borno state.

"We suspect that the gunmen were members of Boko Haram. They have taken over the village," Ularamu said.

Attackers looted stores, set homes on fire, stole about 10 vehicles and killed 63 people, according to a survivor who spoke to AP anonymously.

Barnabas Idi, a farmer and survivor of the attack, told AFP news agency: "The attackers came ... in six trucks and some motorcycles. They were dressed in military uniform. They asked men to assemble at a place, hacking and slaughtering them." 

Reuters news agency later reported that at least 90 people were killed in the attack.

"As I am talking to you now, all the dead bodies of the victims are still lying in the streets," resident Abubakar Usman told Reuters by telephone.

Survivors said they were among hundreds of people from Izghe and neighbouring villages who fled from Borno to Adamawa on foot through the bush in the middle of the night to escape the violence.

Ongoing attacks

Both Christians and Muslims have been targeted in attacks over the past four years. There have been frequent attacks on mosques and churches.

Saturday's attack took place in an area where the country's military has been bombing fighters out of forest bases along the Cameroon border since Wednesday.

Soldiers moved in on foot following Wednesday's bombing and at least nine troops and several fighters were killed in a battle that lasted for hours, hospital and military sources said.

Members of Boko Haram routinely attack civilians after the military attacks them.

Ularamu urged the military to deploy more troops after Saturday's attack, claiming they are outnumbered by fighters armed with anti-aircraft and anti-tank weapons.

Thousands of people have been killed and tens of thousands of others displaced by fighters who seek to create an Islamic state in Nigeria, currently populated by an equal number of Christians and Muslims.

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