Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram has launched a second attack on the north-eastern town of Baga.

Fighters from the group set fire to huge swathes of the town according to the BBC, who cited a local government official. "It has been burnt down," Musa Alhaji Buka said.

Bodies littered the streets of the town after the attack amid fears that up to 2,000 people may have been killed, the official told the BBC.

The town was almost completely destroyed, according to reports in local media.

Boko Haram initially captured Baga on 4 January , having attempted to seize the town and a nearby multinational military base on a number of occasions in recent months.

The group has taken control of numerous towns and villages in north-eastern Nigeria since it launched a campaign to establish an Islamic state in the country in 2009. It is now in de-facto control of much of the Borno state, including three border crossings with Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

The capture of the military base at Baga is a significant gain for the group. The multinational force at the base fled when militants attacked on Sunday, sparking a mass civilian exodus from the town.

Many are reported to have drowned as they attempted to flee across Lake Chad.

In April 2013, in the Baga Massacre, over 2000 homes in Baga were destroyed and over 185 died, caused by fighting between the Nigerian military and the Boko Haram Islamist group.