Members of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) have killed at least four Nigerian soldiers and a militia fighter in Borno state.
According to security sources who spoke to AFP on Sunday, fighting erupted late Saturday when troops ambushed a convoy of ISWAP members – who broke out of Boko Haram – near Jakana village, 42 kilometres (26 miles) from the state capital Maiduguri.
“We lost four soldiers and a member of the vigilante group in the fighting,” a military source said in reference to an anti-jihadist militia in the region.
“The terrorists came in large numbers and our troops fought gallantly but they were overwhelmed.”
A member of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF), who confirmed the death toll, said ISWAP members were riding in pick-up trucks fitted with machine guns.
In a statement on Sunday, the Nigerian military confirmed the death of seven members of ISWAP in a bomb blast.
Spokesperson of the Nigeria Army, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu, said seven jihadists were killed and eight injured when their vehicle hit a landmine during a clash near Jakana on Friday.
He disclosed that the improvised explosive device had been planted by the jihadists, describing the blast a “tactical boomerang”.
Jakana lies on a 120-kilometre highway that links Maiduguri and Damaturu, the capital of Yobe state.