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Jul 24, 2:25 PM EDT

Gunmen slay Nigerian traditional leader

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BAUCHI, Nigeria (AP) -- Witnesses say gunmen dressed as soldiers stormed a village in northeastern Nigeria killing the traditional leader and 11 others.

Idrisa Garubula, a resident of the Biu district, said the attack began around midnight and the leader, Alhaji Ibrahim Dawi, was shot in the head before he died on his way to the hospital Thursday.

Biu neighbors Damboa, an area that has been decimated recently by Boko Haram, a militant group that has killed thousands of people in the past five years.

Last week residents of Damboa said Boko Haram has overrun much of the area, hoisting its black flag in some villages. The Nigerian military says it has not conceded "one inch" of land to Boko Haram.

Boko Haram has previously targeted traditional rulers, including a prominent emir in May.

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