The Joint Task Force (JTF) on Operation Restore Order (ORO) yesterday repelled an attack by suspected Boko Haram sect members on the Nigerian Army military barracks in Munguno, Borno State.
Munguno is about 200 km from Maiduguri, the state capital.
JTF spokesman Lt. Col. Sagir Musa said in a statement in Maiduguri: "Information available to JTF indicated that some suspected terrorists attempted to attack a military barrack in Munguno, headquarters of Munguno local government area of Borno State, on Sunday.
"The attack was repelled by the JTF troops at the outskirt of the barracks."
According to Musa, 20 of the attackers were killed during exchange of fire with the soldiers.
He said, "The encounter led to the death of 20 suspected Boko Haram terrorists. Three four-wheel-drive vehicles and eight motorcycles used by the suspects were destroyed and several arms and ammunition were recovered.
"The following items were recovered: seven AK 47 rifles, 10 rocket-propelled grenade, two RPG tubes, large quantities of assorted ammunition and eight assorted magazines."
Musa added that the JTF had also arrested suspected masterminds of last week's bomb blasts in Maiduguri. Based on intelligence reports, he said, "a special operation was conducted by the JTF which resulted in the arrest of two suspected high-profile commanders of the Boko Haram sect in Maiduguri".
"Those arrested were suspected to be responsible for the February 28 explosions which coincided with the Progressive Governors' meeting in Maiduguri," Musa addedd, adding that the two suspects were being interrogated. (NAN)
Boko Haram denies ceasefire with FG, threatens more attacks
Meanwhile, the leader of Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau, has denied the group's purported ceasefire and dialogue with the federal government.
In a new video released by the sect, Shekau also denied Sheikh Abdulazeez, saying that nobody had asked anybody in the name of Abdulazeez to represent him or his movement.
The sect's spokesman further threatened more attacks in Yobe, Borno, Bauchi, Kano, Kaduna, Taraba and Adamawa states, saying that anyone who kills any of the sect members will be attacked.
Part of the message, translated, reads in part: "There is this wicked rumour making the rounds that we have dialogued with the government of Nigeria which led to a ceasefire on our part. We have also heard how some of our operations and attacks are being credited to criminals. As such, the security agents have been killing our armed members in the name of criminals. We have seen how our members who were out on holy mission are being attacked and killed with the label of criminals.
"We are telling the world that whoever kills any of our members in the name of being criminals would surely be avenged unless such person repents now.
"We are stating it categorically that we are not in any dialogue or ceasefire agreement with anyone. And we have never asked anybody in the name Abdulazeez to represent me, Abubakar Shekau, the leader of this movement.
"I swear by Allah that Abdulazeez or whatever he calls himself did not get any authority from me to represent me in any capacity. I do not know him. And if we per adventure encounter Abulazeez and his group, I swear by Allah we are going to mete to them the grave judgement that Allah has prescribed for their likes in the holy book.
"I want the world to know that we have no dialogue with government. I have on several occasions attempted to pass this message