After massacring more than 80 people last Tuesday, a group of jihadists linked to the Islamic State killed dozens more Nigerians in attacks on two villages on Saturday.
Following a brief skirmish with armed locals who constituted part of a government-backed militia, jihadist gunmen on motorcycles and in the back of pickup trucks used machine guns and rocket launchers to kill fleeing villagers. Almost 40 people died in the village of Nganzai and an additional 15 were killed in a second attack on the town of Monguno.
In one encounter, the jihadists targeted a transport truck loaded with traders.
"We don't know how many people were on the lorry which was full," local resident Grema Nuwaisu said. "It was completely burnt, making it difficult to identify bodies. Only two passengers jumped off the truck and escaped."
The jihadists also burned down a United Nations humanitarian hub and a local police station, all while distributing leaflets warning residents not to work with the Nigerian military or with international relief organizations.
The Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), an offshoot of Boko Haram, claimed responsibility for both attacks. Together, the two Islamic militant groups have murdered thousands of Nigerians and have displaced millions more.