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Military source: Chadian soldiers killed in suspected Boko Haram attack

A Chadian security source says 11 Chadian soldiers have died in fighting with suspected Boko Haram Islamists in a border region. Chad is participating in a military alliance to help combat the extremist group.

The deadly clash occurred when suspected militants from Nigeria's Boko Harm group carried out a pre-dawn strike near Lake Chad, the security source said.

Seventeen of the attackers also died in the fighting, while 13 Chadian soldiers were wounded in addition to the 11 killed, according to the source, who added that the army was continuing search operations in the region after repelling the attack.

The attack reportedly took place in Kaiga Ngouboua, about two kilometers from Chad's border to Nigeria.

Regional cooperation

Chad has sent soldiers to take part in an 8,700-strong regional force that is fighting the Islamist group, which has waged a bloody insurgency since 2009 marked by numerous atrocities including mass abductions and massacres. At least 17,000 people have been killed and more than 2.5 million made homeless in related violence.

In its bid to reach its declared goal of establishing an Islamic state in the region, Boko Haram has executed attacks not just in its heartland in the northeast of Nigeria, but also in neighboring Chad, Niger and Cameroon, which have also contributed soldiers to the alliance.

tj/msh (AFP, Reuters)

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