As more facts continued to emerge from the latest attacks of the Islamic sect, Amnesty International has reported that a woman in labor was among the victims who lost their lives during the latest deadliest attack in the country.
A witness to the mass killings in the town of Baga, in northern Nigeria, was quoted as saying that the woman was shot by indiscriminate fire.
“Half of the baby boy [was] out and she died like this,” the unnamed witness said.
The attack by Boko Haram on Baga, which began earlier this month, killed hundreds of people and has sent refugees flooding south and even across Lake Chad.
Among the others hit by random fire and targeted killings were small children. Bodies were left lying in the street.
“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,” a man in his fifties was quoted as saying.
Another woman added: “I don’t know how many but there were bodies everywhere we looked.”
One man who escaped from Baga after hiding for three days said he was “stepping on bodies” for three miles as he fled through the bush.
The government has said that only 150 people died, but it is often accused of underplaying casualties from its war with Boko Haram to minimise awareness of the failure of the army to stop the group.
Amnesty and Human Rights Watch have published satellite imagery of Baga and nearby Doron Baga, showing the extent of the physical destruction.
Amnesty said that the images showed “devastation of catastrophic proportions”, with more than 3,700 structures – 620 in Baga and 3,100 in Doron Baga – damaged or completely destroyed.
HRW said 11 per cent of Baga and 57 per cent of Doron Baga was destroyed, most likely by arson, attributing the greater damage in the latter to the fact that it houses a military base.
At least 16 settlements around Baga were also burnt to the ground and at least 20,000 people fled, according to local officials.
In addition, the group, which kidnapped hundreds of schoolgirls from the town of Chibok last April and has sold many into marriage or slavery, seized 300 women, later releasing older women, mothers and children, but keeping younger single women.