Lagos, Nigeria (PANA) - The Nigerian military said it killed 30 members of the Islamic sect Boko Haram in a gun battle in Damaturu, capital of northern Yobe state, on Sunday.
In a statement, Eli Lazarus, spokesman for the military Joint Task Force (JTF) in Yobe state, said those killed included the field commander of the sect in the state.
''Security operatives on cordon and search operation in suspected Boko Haram hideout at Kandahar and the cemetery areas of Damaturu engaged in a gun battle with the suspected terrorists.
''In the battle, the notorious, one-eyed Bakaka, the field commander of Boko Haram in Damaturu and a close associate of Abubakar Shekau (who is believed to the sect's leader) was killed.
''Ten (10) others arrested during the battle are presently assisting investigators to track other senior members of the terrorist group,” the statement said.
JTF said it also recovered several arms and ammunition from the insurgents, including six rifles, 70 rounds of ammunition, several telephone handsets, knives as well as bows and arrows.
It was the latest in a series of successes recorded by the military against the sect in recent times, and its leader, Shekau, acknowledged this in his most recent video, saying “All I can confirm is that they are killing us rather than dialoguing with us.”
Boko Haram has killed over 1,400 people in gun and bomb attacks since launching its campaign in 2009, according to the New York-based Human Rights Watch.
Among other objectives, the sect says it is campaigning to establish an Islamic State in the predominantly-Muslim northern Nigeria.
-0- PANA SEG 8Oct2012