Nigerian troops missing after Boko Haram attack

Jul 22, 2016, 7:47 AM EDT
(Source: US Army Africa/flickr)
(Source: US Army Africa/flickr)

Nigerian army said that dozens of its soldiers have been missing after a fierce clash with Boko Haram militants in Borno State on Thursday. The troops were returning to their base after seizing several arms in Guro Gongon village, when they were ambushed by the insurgents. Although no casualties were reported but at least 19 soldiers were critically injured in the assault.

Spokesman for the army, Colonel Sani Usman, said that a rescue team has been deployed in the area to search for the missing troops, reports International Business Times. Usman added that the wounded have been evacuated and shifted to the state capital, Maiduguri.

Thursday’s encounter followed a successful operation by Nigerian army, which freed 42 women and 38 children from Gangere village in the country's northeast, notes Vice News. More than 40 militants were killed in the offensive that is a part of a major crackdown on the Nigerian Islamist insurgency in the region.

Over the past two years, the security forces have been successful in driving out Boko Haram fighters from many of their strongholds but the group still remains a dominant force in several parts of Borno state, as well as in neighboring countries like Cameroon.