Nigeria's military has allowed journalists to see one area where its soldiers have fought Islamic extremists as part of a new offensive.

The tour happened Wednesday in Borno state, one of three now under emergency rule.

In Marte, a village in the arid lands that border Cameroon, Chad and Niger, soldiers say extremists raised their own flag there. Journalists saw a church that had been set ablaze and a bombed police station. Commanders said an area with burned-out cars was the site of an extremist base.

Nigeria has faced increasing attacks from Islamic extremists since 2010. This latest offensive comes after President Goodluck Jonathan acknowledged that extremists had taken over some small towns and villages in the northeast.