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UN says some 30,000 people flee new Nigeria fighting

JOHANNESBURG — The United Nations says some 30,000 people have fled fresh fighting in northeastern Nigeria amid what the government has called an extremist resurgence.

A statement on Wednesday by the U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Nigeria, Edward Kallon, says clashes between Nigeria’s military and armed groups near Lake Chad late last month triggered “massive displacement” and a “humanitarian tragedy.”

It says most of the tens of thousands of displaced people have come from Baga near with border with Chad and ended up in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state and the birthplace of the decade-old Boko Haram insurgency.

The U.N. says the new fighting has caused some 260 aid workers to leave conflict-affected areas since November, “the largest withdrawal of aid workers since the international humanitarian response scaled up in 2016.”