KANO NIGERIA – Nigeria’s military Saturday imposed a 24-hour curfew in parts of a northeastern city as soldiers pressed on with a campaign against Boko Haram Islamists that has sent people fleeing from their homes.
Nigeria launched the sweeping operation earlier in the week, deploying thousands of troops across three states where President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency after the Islamists seized territory and chased out the government.
The group, which has said it wants to create an Islamic state in Nigeria’s mainly Muslim north, has carried out scores of attacks since 2010, and has become emboldened and better armed in recent months.
In the city of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital and Boko Haram’s traditional home base, a “24-hour curfew” was imposed in 12 neighborhoods, military spokesman Lt. Col. Sagir Musa said.
The military said dozens of insurgents have been killed in the offensive targeting all three states that were put under emergency decree, including Adamawa and Yobe, but Borno is expected to see the most bloodshed.