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Boko Haram 'cleared' from Adamawa state: military

13 March 2015, 07:02

Lagos - The military on Thursday claimed that Boko Haram militants had now been cleared from one of three northeast states worst hit by the insurgency.

"Troops today succeeded in clearing terrorists out of #Madagali. The last of places held by the terrorists in Adamawa," the military said on its Twitter account @DefenceInfoNG.

A separate message said there were no military casualties when the town near the border with Borno state to the north was recaptured, adding: "#AdamawaisFree".

President Goodluck Jonathan predicted in an interview with Voice of America published on Wednesday that Adamawa and Yobe states would be liberated by next week, and Borno within the next three weeks.

Also Read: Jonathan fighting Boko Haram to win elections

All three were placed under a state of emergency in May 2013, which saw troops and civilian vigilantes force the Islamists out of urban centres into more remote, rural areas.

The violence continued and even intensified, however, with the military unable to stop a takeover of dozens of towns and villages in all three states from mid-2014.

Jonathan wanted to extend the state of emergency for a third time in November last year but was blocked by parliament.

Boko Haram seized the predominantly Christian town of Madagali in August last year.

A spokesman for the Roman Catholic diocese of the Borno state capital Maiduguri claimed at the time that scores of Christians were killed while women were forced to convert to Islam and marry insurgents.

The military, assisted by soldiers from neighbouring Niger, Chad and Cameroon, last month began a regional fightback against Boko Haram because of increased fears about cross-border attacks.

On Wednesday, the government in Abuja said 36 towns in the three states had been recaptured as part of the operation, which is designed to secure and stabilise the northeast before elections on March 28.



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