Soldiers on patrol after bombs, gunfire rock Gashua


Explosions and gunfire rocked the prison town of Gashua in Yobe state early today, with soldiers deployed to maintain the peace.

There has been no report about casualties yet.

The Nigerian military said troops have been deployed to the town, made famous by its prison.

“There have been explosions and gunfire throughout the town. It all began around 3 am and lasted up to six in the morning,” one resident told the AFP.

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

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

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

Military spokesman 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.

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