Blasts, gunfire rock town in Nigeria

2012-11-06 12:19
(File, AFP)

(File, AFP)

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Kano - Explosions and gunfire rocked a town in Nigeria's restive northeast on Tuesday and prompted a military deployment, but there were no immediate reports of casualties, residents and the army said.

The military said troops had deployed to the town of Gashua, located in Yobe state, where the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram has previously carried out waves of deadly attacks.

"There have been explosions and gunfire throughout the town. It all began around 03:00 and lasted up to six in the morning," one resident said.

He said the unrest and heavy presence of soldiers had forced residents to remain in their homes.

Three hours

Another resident said military patrols could be heard in the streets after the shooting and blasts stopped.

"The explosions and shootings started around three and continued for almost three hours," he said. "Everybody has remained indoors."

Military spokesperson Lazarus Eli confirmed soldiers were patrolling, but declined to give further details.

"Our troops have deployed to Gashua this morning, but I can't tell you the situation in the town now," he said.

Nigeria's northeast has been hard hit by deadly attacks blamed on Boko Haram, leaving hundreds of people dead and prompting a heavy army deployment.

Violence linked to the sect is believed to have left more than 2 800 people dead since 2009, including killings by the security forces.

Read more on:    boko haram  |  nigeria  |  west africa
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