Boko Haram militants kidnapped the wife of Cameroon’s vice prime minister and killed at least three people on Sunday in a cross-border attack involving more than 200 assailants in the northern town of Kolofata, Cameroon.
A local religious leader, Seini Boukar Lamine, who is also the town’s mayor, and five members of his family were also kidnapped in a separate attack on his home.
Boko Haram, an Islamist group which made international headlines with the abduction of 200 Nigerian schoolgirls in April, has stepped up cross-border attacks into Cameroon in recent weeks. Cameroon has deployed troops to its northern region, joining international efforts to combat the militants.
“I can confirm that the home of Vice Prime Minister Amadou Ali in Kolofata came under a savage attack from Boko Haram militants,” government spokesman Issa Tchiroma, who is also communications minister, told Reuters by telephone.
“They unfortunately took away his wife. They also attacked the Lamido’s residence and he was also kidnapped,” he said, adding that at least three people were killed in the attack.
The Sunday attack is the third Boko Haram attack in Cameroon since Friday. At least four soldiers were killed in the two previous attacks.
On Friday, roughly 22 suspected Boko Haram militants held in Cameroon’s northern hub of Maroua since March were sentenced to prison sentences ranging from 10 to 20 years. It is unclear whether the attacks were related to the sentencing of the militants.
A mission to retrieve more than 200 girls kidnapped by the Boko Haram in April was abandoned by the Nigerian government.
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