Boko Haram have carried out devastating attacks in Baga and Doron Baga, slaughtering as many as 2,500 people and wiping entire towns from the map.
Shocking satellite images show the scale of destruction caused by the Islamic militants, including hospitals, schools, homes, and shops burned to the ground. Up to 3,700 buildings have been completely destroyed in the deadly rampage that has seen thousands of innocent men, women, and young children ruthlessly murdered by Boko Haram terrorists.
In one sickening attack, a pregnant woman was shot during labor, according to information provided by witnesses to Amnesty International.
“Half of the baby boy is out and she died like this.”
Boko Haram seized the towns of Baga and Doron Baga last Wednesday, and Amnesty are describing the satellite images of the damage as “catastrophic.”
“Of all Boko Haram assaults analysed by Amnesty International, this is the largest and most destructive yet. It represents a deliberate attack on civilians whose homes, clinics and schools are now burnt out ruins.”
The charity has rejected the Nigerian government’s stance that the number of people killed in Baga, including Boko Haram fighters, “has so far not exceeded about 150,” stating that the images, along with witness reports, mean the death toll is far higher.
“Residents have not been able to return to bury the dead, let alone count their number. But through these satellite images combined with graphic testimonies a picture of what is likely to be Boko Haram’s deadliest attack ever is becoming clearer.”
The before and after satellite images were taken on January 2 and January 7, with the color red detailing any healthy vegetation.
Nigerian officials say militants attacked Baga on January 7, after taking over a military base in the town that had been abandoned by fleeing Nigerian troops.
Adotei Akwei, of Amnesty International, told BBC News that access to the areas attacked By Boko Haram was restricted and therefore difficult to confirm the death toll, but believed the Nigerian government was “grossly understating” the number of deaths.
“They killed so many people. I saw maybe around 100 killed at that time in Baga. I ran to the bush. As we were running, they were shooting and killing.”
Some of the details emerging from residents and witnesses are truly horrifying, and the full scale of the catastrophe is unfathomable.
“As we were running for our lives, we came across many corpses, both men and women, and even children. Some had gunshot wounds in the head and some had their legs bound and hands tied behind their backs.”
Speaking to Nigeria’s Premium Times, one local farmer revealed how he still doesn’t know the fate of his four children, wife, or elder brother. The farmer revealed how Boko Haram extremists opened fire on boats carrying fleeing residents across the lake.
“We saw dead bodies especially, on the islands of Lake Chad where fishermen had settled. Several persons were killed there like insects.”
To add to the escalating crisis, it is also suspected that Boko Haram are using young abducted girls as suicide bombers.
At this stage, it is not clear if the girls are being forced into suicide missions or meet their end unaware of their role, carrying explosives detonated remotely by Boko Haram.