Suspected members of the Boko Haram sect set ablaze a Gombe Police station on Saturday, killing 14 people, witnesses say.
According to reports, the attackers had also tried to break into a prison at a different location in the northeastern city in a bid to free the inmates, but the attempt failed.
The radical sect has claimed responsibility for a wave of recent attacks in the northern and central areas of Africa’s most populous nation. They have claimed on several occasions that members of the sect were being held illegally in state prisons and have demanded their release.
Recently, their attacks have targeted security bases and police posts.
Witnesses in Gombe State discovered at least 14 burnt bodies in and around the police station, reports said.
A witness speaking on the condition of anonymity said 10 bodies were found in the police building, adding that they could be police officers.
The other four victims were found in a charred vehicle outside the police station, reports said.
“At a roundabout between the police station and the prison stood a car that was burned down with all its four occupants. It’s not clear who they were,” the witness added.
Another resident, Babandi Ali, said “the police station has been razed and there are burned bodies inside, but I couldn’t confirm how many. However there is a burned car at the roundabout with four people burnt inside.”
According to the AFP, prison officers had battled Boko Haram gunmen who had attempted to gain forced entry into prison in an effort to free group members being held there.
“The prison is intact,” a resident who lives nearby said.
The sect had previously carried out a similar attack, orchestrating a prison break in Kogi state and freeing 119 inmates.