Nigerian Army on Thursday said Boko Haram fighters were now deserting the northeast to the neighbouring countries.
This, according to the army, was due to the military bombardments of their strongholds in the Northeast.
A statement by its spokesman Col Sagir Musa said the concerted efforts of troops of Operation Lafiya Dole and the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) had led to the death of scores of Boko Haram fighters.
He added that the remnants of the Boko Haram fighters were now in a mass exodus to the border towns outside Nigeria.
Musa said: “The Nigerian Army wishes to inform the public that due to the combined onslaught on the identified hideouts of elements of the criminal elements of bandits and erstwhile Boko Haram/ISWAP fighters by our troops and the MNJTF, at the fringes of Lake Chad region, there is observed the massive exodus of the criminals out of Lake Chad Tumbus to North and Central Africa sub-regions.
“There are credible reports from very reliable sources indicating massive movements of the criminal groups out of the area towards Sudan and the Central African Republic as a result of successful artillery and aerial bombardments of their settlements and as the heat of the onslaught is becoming unbearable.
“This mass movement for their lives was necessitated, following the sustained air and artillery bombardments by the Nigerian Armed Forces and coalition forces of the MNJTF, which killed uncountable erstwhile Boko Haram/ISWAP fighters and destroyed their weapons and equipment.
“The various national troops and the MNJTF are maintaining aggressive patrols and blocking positions against infiltration by the escaping criminals.
“It is important to note that most of the Tumbus are located along the Quadrangular borders of Cameroon, Chad, Niger Republic and Nigeria. To further annihilate the fleeing terrorists, efforts are ongoing for continued shelling, bombardment and pursuits. Similarly, the countries in these sub-regions have also had been contacted through the MNJTF headquarters.”