Boko Haram militants kill 10 Chadian soldiers near Nigeria border

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A "dozen soldiers" were killed Tuesday by jihadists who attacked an army post in western Chad, a presidential spokesman told AFP.

The attack also caused "injuries", said in a statement Brah Mahamat.

It was perpetrated "in the early morning" near Ngouboua, in the Lake Chad region, on the borders of Chad, Niger, Cameroon and Nigeria, where the jihadist groups Boko Haram and its dissident branch Islamic State in West Africa (Iswap) regularly attack armies and civilians in the four countries.

An army unit, "dispatched as a precursor to set up an outpost on the island of Bouka-Toullorom," was "attacked by elements of the Boko Haram sect," Mahamat said. The Chadian authorities indiscriminately call "Boko Haram" the group of the same name or the Iswap.

"The ten dead and wounded are all elements of the defense forces," the spokesman told AFP.

Lake Chad is a vast expanse of water and swamps dotted with hundreds of islets, some of which serve as hideouts for Boko Haram and Iswap jihadists.

"Today, Boko Haram no longer has the strength to attack the barracks" in the lake area and is now targeting "the population and their property," said Chadian President General Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno 10 days ago while traveling in the area. 

His transitional government has vowed to more than double the size of its army by the end of 2022 to deal with security challenges, including threats from Islamist militants linked to al Qaeda and the Islamic State.

The Boko Haram insurgency, which erupted in northeast Nigeria in 2009, has killed more than 350,000 people and forced millions to flee their homes.

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