Peace and Freedom

Kano, Nigeria (CNN)Hundreds of Boko Haram gunmen on Sunday launched a predawn attack on the Nigerian city of Maiduguri and were locked in a fierce battle with government troops on the outskirts of the city, according to the military, residents and citizen vigilantes.

The militants launched a simultaneous attack on the town of Monguno and were apparently successful in taking control of the town and its military barracks, a Nigerian military officer in Maiduguri told CNN.

Nigerian military manning checkpoints in Maiduguri, North East Nigeria. (File image)
Maiduguri would be a major prize for Boko Haram

“Our soldiers initially repelled the terrorists but they mobilized more fighters and came back in full force. They overwhelmed our troops and forced them to retreat,” said the officer, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Monguno, a town of about 100,000 people in northeast Nigeria, is about a 135-kilometer (85-mile)…

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