LAGOS, Sept. 19, (Xinhua/GNA) - Boko Haram terrorists are fleeing their hideout around Lake Chad to north and central Africa sub-regions amid the all-out offensive by multinational force, the Nigerian army said Thursday.
The combined onslaught by the troops of Nigerian army and Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) on the identified Boko Haram hideouts was responsible for their exodus, Sagir Musa, the army spokesperson said in a statement reaching Xinhua in Lagos.
He said there were credible reports indicating massive movements of the terror group militants out of the area.
"This mass movement for their lives was necessitated by the sustained air and artillery bombardments by the Nigerian armed forces and coalition forces of the MNJTF, which killed uncountable number of the terrorists and destroyed their weapons and equipment," he said.
The army spokesperson said the various national troops and the MNJTF were maintaining aggressive patrols and blocking positions against infiltration by the escaping criminals.
Boko Haram has been trying since 2009 to establish an Islamic state in northeastern Nigeria, having killed some 20,000 people and forcing displacement of millions of others.
The resilience of the insurgent Boko Haram group in the Lake Chad basin since 2009 posed enormous security, humanitarian and governance challenges, according to the United Nations.