The Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram has attacked a town in Niger for the first time, witnesses say.
The attack on the border town of Bosso was the group’s second on a neighbouring country in as many days.
Its militants reportedly killed at least 70 people in an attack on the town of Fotokol in Cameroon on Thursday.
The Boko Haram insurgency has left thousands dead and displaced more than a million over the past six years.
The militants control a large stretch of land in north-eastern Nigeria.
A BBC reporter in the region said that the militant group attacked Bosso with heavy weapons, causing residents to flee and or hide indoors.
Troops from Niger and Chad, who have a base in Bosso, reportedly engaged in fierce battles trying to repel the Islamists.
One resident told Agence France-Presse news agency: “We can hear the sound of weapons all around the town, often very near our windows.
“There is the noise of heavy weapons and of light arms, making our houses shake.”
At least five Niger soldiers were wounded in the attack, local officials told Reuters, with fighting ongoing.
Bosso lies just across the border from Nigeria’s Borno state, one of the areas worst affected by Islamist violence.
The town is home to thousands of Nigerian refugees who have fled Boko Haram.
The militant group, which has sworn allegiance to Islamic State and desires its own caliphate in Nigeria, has killed thousands and displaced millions in the country’s north-east
It is now threatening Chad, Niger and Cameroon, prompting Chad to deploy 2,500 troops to border areas.
Report: BBC AFRICA
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