Nigerian forces kill 13 Boko Haram militants after church attacks
January 2, 2013 -- Updated 0951 GMT (1751 HKT)
- One soldier is killed in the gunfight
- Boko Haram's name means "Western education is sacrilege"
- A January 2012 militant attack killed 211
- State Dept.: Group has ties to al Qaeda
(CNN) -- Islamist militants in Nigeria's restive north have taken the lives of 34 people since Christmas, including 27 Christians attending church services.
On Tuesday, the country's military took the fight to Boko Haram's stronghold, killing 13 suspected combatants.
Read more: Nigeria guilty of abuses in pursuing Boko Haram militants
Joint Task Force Operation Restore Order lost one soldier during the afternoon gunfight in the isolated town of Maiduguri in Nigeria's far northwest corner, said spokesman Sagir Musa.
The task force condemned alleged Boko Haram attacks going back to July 2012 in a statement, calling them "incessant callous, brutal, barbaric and impious killings." These included attacks on mosques, churches and businesses.
Boko Haram blamed for attacks in Nigeria
Bombs target newspapers in Nigeria
Human Rights Watch said the militant group has killed more than 2,800 people in all.
On Christmas Eve, attackers raided two churches, killing 12 people and setting one of the churches alight. Six days later, suspected Boko Haram fighters killed at least 15 Christian worshipers, slitting some of their throats, according to Nigerian authorities.
Read more: 22 killed in three attacks in Nigeria
Boko Haram carried out its largest known massacre in January 2012 killing 211 through coordinated bombings and gun assaults in the northern city of Kano, a popular target. The group often attacks Nigerian police stations.
The name Boko Haram means "Western education is sacrilege."
In the past, they have attacked other Muslims they felt were on an immoral path but have increasingly killed Christians.
The U.S. State Department has accused Boko Haram of attacking mosques and churches to incite tensions between the two religious groups, hoping to drive a wedge between them.
It has condemned some of the group's leaders for alleged ties to al Qaeda.
Read more: Opinion: Nigeria is a sinking ship, but we must not desert it
CNN's Nana Karikari-apau contributed to this report
Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 2327 GMT (0727 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
Today's five most popular stories