LAGOS, Nigeria – Soldiers and equipment have been funneling into northeastern Nigeria for a planned offensive against Islamic extremists who have been waging a bloody guerrilla campaign.
Associated Press journalists and witnesses have seen army troops, trucks and armored personnel carriers moving into Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states in recent days. The deployments come as President Goodluck Jonathan declared a statement of emergency in those states, giving the military additional powers to arrest and take over buildings believed to house extremists.
Now, soldiers will have to fight across an arid stretch of land nearly 60,000 square miles to root out the extremist fighters. This renewed campaign comes after a series of attacks on civilians by military personnel, leaving some in the region fearful.