Four civilians were killed in an attack by suspected Boko Haram militants on Monday in the Nigerian city at the center of a conflict with the Islamists, a resident and two officials told Reuters.

Nigeria’s army said on Monday evening it had repelled the assault on the outskirts of Maiduguri, the spiritual birthplace of Boko Haram. It was the first major attack on the northeast city since June.

The army statement made no mention of casualties but Musa Alkali, a resident of the attacked area, Molai, told Reuters on Tuesday he saw four corpses.

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