Nigeria: 5 Die as Patrol Van Ambushed

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Gunmen opened fire and threw explosives at a military and police patrol in northeast Nigeria, killing a policeman, a soldier and three civilians, authorities and residents said Tuesday.

Gunmen attacked the joint patrol with guns and explosives in the town of Mubi late Monday, police spokeswoman Altine Daniel said.

Three other soldiers were wounded and the gunmen fled after the attack, she said.

A resident said the gunmen, who were in a car and on motorcycles, opened fire and threw explosives at a patrol van, leading to a five-hour shootout.

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It was not immediately clear who was behind the violence, but scores of similar attacks have been carried out by Islamist group Boko Haram. The Islamist group’s attacks, mainly in northern Nigeria, have left hundreds dead since 2009.

Boko Haram once claimed to be seeking the formation of an Islamic state in Nigeria’s mainly Muslim north, but its demands have often shifted and become largely unclear.

Monday night’s attack followed the discovery of six bodies along a roadside earlier in the day, though the circumstances of their deaths were unclear.