Members of the Boko Haram sect have continued their reign of terror, killing about 19 persons in a Camerounian village, Bia, last Thursday, according to Agence France Presse (AFP). Most of the victims were beheaded, the report added. “The final toll from this attack is 19 dead, with a majority of the victims decapitated,” a security source was quoted to have said Saturday on condition of anonymity.

Security sources had previously said 10 civilians were killed in the cross-border raid on the village of Bia in Cameroon’s Far North region. The attack comes after a regional military offensive — which includes Cameroun — has claimed a string of successes in their fightback against the Islamist militants in Nigeria in recent weeks. Bia, which borders Lake Chad, has been identified previously by security forces as a recruiting ground for Boko Haram militants.

The source speaking to AFP on Saturday said security forces were slow to react to the raid on Bia, located in an area with several military bases. “We noted a late response by our forces,”, the source said. “Many huts were burned down,” the source added. Also during the night from Thursday to Friday, Boko Haram Islamists attacked a Cameroon army position in Amchide, on the border with Nigeria. “They burned houses in Amchide, but without losses on our side.

The attack was repelled. We don’t know yet about casualties on the enemy side,” a security source told AFP on Friday. The insurgency by Boko Haram has killed some 13,000 people in northeast Nigeria and sent 1.5 million fleeing their homes since 2009. The group had in recent months widened its attacks into neighbouring nations, prompting Chad, Cameroun and Niger to launch a joint offensive with the Nigerian army, resulting in a series of rebel-held towns and villages being recaptured in Nigeria’s northeast.