Over 70 Lives Lost in Intense Clash Between Boko Haram & ISWAP as Chad Basin Becomes Epicenter of Rivalry
In a recent escalation of hostilities between Boko Haram and its rival faction, ISWAP, approximately 70 combatants and commanders lost their lives during a clash on Saturday. Reliable sources indicate that the conflict intensified due to an influx of arms and fighters from Sahel ISIS, bolstering ISWAP’s presence in the Chad Basin region.
The ongoing clashes between these terrorist groups have resulted in heightened distress for the Niger Republic section of the Lake Chad Basin. Consequently, a significant number of Nigerian refugees in the neighboring Francophone country are returning home, contributing to the overcrowding of the IDPs camp at Damasak, Mobbar LGA, Borno State.
Both Boko Haram and ISWAP not only seek to eliminate each other from the region but also aim to confront the Multi-National Joint Task Force, intending to establish control over the Chad Basin. The clash on Saturday occurred at Tumbum Ali Island in Marte Local Government Area of Borno State, reportedly a retaliatory attack by ISWAP against Boko Haram for the killing of ISWAP fighters by the Buduma factions.
Zagazola Makama, a Chad Basin security and counter-insurgency expert, reported the destruction of six boats belonging to the Bakura Buduma faction and four JAS elements boats during the clash.
While initial estimates suggest casualties on both sides could exceed 60, other sources indicate the figure might be around 70 or more as the conflict persists. The relentless clashes between ISWAP and Boko Haram underscore a three-pronged terror dynamic, involving the MNJTF and the two rival groups.