MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (Reuters)—Islamist militants have overrun an army base in the remote northeast Nigerian town of Baga, two security sources said on Sunday.
Baga is notionally the headquarters of a multinational force comprising troops from Niger, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon, although only Nigerian troops are actually stationed there.
Troops eventually fled the remote station on the semi-desert shores of Lake Chad after it was attacked on Saturday by Boko Haram fighters in military vehicles, both sources said. The military did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The insurgency has killed over 10,000 people this year, according to a count by the Council on Foreign Relations in November. It is the gravest threat to Nigeria, Africa’s biggest economy, and a headache for President Goodluck Jonathan ahead of an election on Feb. 14 where he is being challenged by opposition leader Muhammadu Buhari, a former military ruler seen as tough on security.