An attack by Boko Haram on Baga, Nigeria, was the deadliest in the history of the militant group, according to a statement from Amnesty International. Musa Alhaji Bukar, a local government official, told the BBC he feared that 2,000 people had been killed in the massacre.
The precise number of the dead is unclear. Baba Abba Hassan, another official, told the Associated Press that that most of the victims were women, children, and elderly people "who could not run fast enough" when the attackers arrived in Baga with assault rifles and grenade launchers. An anti-Boko Haram civilian fighter said that his group had given up attempting to count the corpses.
The attack left Baga razed to the ground, according to Amnesty. Musa Alhaji Bukar described the grisly aftermath to the BBC:
Musa Alhaji Bukar, a senior government official in the area, said that fleeing residents told him that Baga, which had a population of about 10,000, was now "virtually non-existent".
"It has been burnt down," he told the BBC Hausa service.
Those who fled reported that they had been unable to bury the dead, and corpses littered the town's streets, he said.
Boko Haram now reportedly controls Baga and 16 neighboring towns in northeastern Nigeria. According to the Council on Foreign Relations, the Islamist group killed 10,000 people in Nigeria in 2014 alone and displaced over a million more.
[Image via AP]