ABUJA, May 27 (Xinhua) -- At least 24 security operatives have been killed in the latest onslaught with suspected Boko Haram fighters in Nigeria's northeastern state of Yobe, a local resident and military source said on Tuesday.
The military source, who preferred anonymity, said Buni Yadi community, located in Gujba local government area of the northern state, witnessed an armed uprising late Monday when insurgents attacked the police on patrol and military officers at their duty posts and engaged them in a gun fight.
According to the source, lifeless bodies of 14 policemen and 10 soldiers littered the area on Tuesday, following the shooting that lasted several hours. Some injured security operatives where rushed to hospitals in the state capital Damaturu, added the source, who was among military officers deployed to assess the extent of damage caused by the attack.
Mohammed Adamu, a resident, told a Xinhua reporter that the attackers, who drove in about 10 vehicles, also set aflame a local court, a divisional police station and official residence of the traditional ruler of the town. "Some of the residents were even hit by stray bullets. We are still counting our losses" he added.
Buni Yadi, located in the southern part of Yobe, was under intense attack in February, when more than 49 school children were slain by Boko Haram, which claimed responsibility for the heinous act.
"Boko Haram", which means (Western) education is taboo, had been behind deadly attacks perpetrated in Nigeria since 2009. It seeks to enshrine the Islamic Sharia law in the constitution of Nigeria, Africa's most populous country.
The sect recently claimed responsibility for the mid-April abduction of more than 200 school girls in northeastern state of Borno, which has received tons of condemnation locally and internationally.