WASHINGTON (AP) — Scores of low-flying planes circling American cities are part of a civilian air force operated by the FBI and obscured behind fictitious companies, The Associated Press has learned.

The AP traced at least 50 aircraft back to the FBI, and identified more than 100 flights in 11 states over a 30-day period since late April, orbiting both major cities and rural areas. At least 115 planes, including 90 Cessna aircraft, were mentioned in a federal budget document from 2009.

For decades, the planes have provided support to FBI surveillance operations on the ground. But now the aircraft are equipped with high-tech cameras, and in rare circumstances, technology capable of tracking thousands of cellphones, raising questions about how these surveillance flights affect Americans’ privacy.

“It’s important that federal law enforcement personnel have the tools they need to find and catch criminals,” said Charles Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “But whenever an operation may also monitor the activities of Americans who are not the intended target, we must make darn sure that safeguards are in place to protect the civil liberties of innocent Americans.”

The FBI says the planes are not equipped or used for bulk collection activities or mass surveillance. The surveillance equipment is used for ongoing investigations, the FBI says, generally without a judge’s approval.

The FBI confirmed for the first time the wide-scale use of the aircraft, which the AP traced to at least 13 fake companies, such as FVX Research, KQM Aviation, NBR Aviation and PXW Services.

“The FBI’s aviation program is not secret,” spokesman Christopher Allen said in a statement. “Specific aircraft and their capabilities are protected for operational security purposes.”

The front companies are used to protect the safety of the pilots, the agency said. That setup also shields the identity of the aircraft so that suspects on the ground don’t know they’re being followed.

The FBI is not the only federal law enforcement agency to take such measures.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has its own planes, also registered to fake companies, according to a 2011 Justice Department inspector general report. At the time, the DEA had 92 aircraft in its fleet. And since 2007, the U.S. Marshals Service has operated an aerial surveillance program with its own fleet equipped with technology that can capture data from thousands of cellphones, the Wall Street Journal reported last year.

In the FBI’s case, one of its fake companies shares a post office box with the Justice Department, creating a link between the companies and the FBI through publicly available Federal Aviation Administration records.

Basic aspects of the FBI’s program are withheld from the public in censored versions of official reports from the Justice Department’s inspector general, and the FBI also has been careful not to reveal its surveillance flights in court documents. The agency will not say how many planes are currently in its fleet.

The planes are equipped with technology that can capture video of unrelated criminal activity on the ground that could be handed over to prosecutions. One of the planes, photographed in flight last week by the AP in northern Virginia, bristled with unusual antennas under its fuselage and a camera on its left side.

Some of the aircraft can also be equipped with technology that can identify thousands of people below through the cellphones they carry, even if they’re not making a call or in public. Officials said that practice, which mimics cell towers and gets phones to reveal basic subscriber information, is used in only limited situations.

“These are not your grandparents’ surveillance aircraft,” said Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst with the American Civil Liberties Union. Stanley said the flights are significant “if the federal government is maintaining a fleet of aircraft whose purpose is to circle over American cities, especially with the technology we know can be attached to those aircraft.”

The Justice Department recently published a privacy policy for its agencies’ use of drones and unmanned aircraft systems. But that policy does not apply to piloted aircraft. An FBI spokesman said the FBI’s flights comply with agency rules.

Those rules, which are heavily redacted in publicly available documents, limit the types of equipment the agency can use, as well as the justifications and duration of the surveillance.

Evolving technology can record higher-quality video from long distances, even at night, and can capture certain identifying information from cellphones using a device known as a “cell-site simulator” — or Stingray, to use one of the product’s brand names. These can trick pinpointed cellphones into revealing identification numbers of subscribers, including those not suspected of a crime.

The FBI has recently begun obtaining court orders to use this technology. Previously, the Obama administration had been directing local authorities through secret agreements not to reveal their own use of the devices, even encouraging prosecutors to drop cases rather than disclose the technology’s use in open court.

Officials say cellphone surveillance from FBI aircraft was rarely used.

Details confirmed by the FBI about its air force track closely with published reports since at least 2003 that a government surveillance program might be behind suspicious-looking planes slowly circling neighborhoods.

One such plane was spotted during the recent disturbance in Baltimore that followed the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who sustained grievous injuries while in police custody. In that instance, the FBI was helping local police with aerial support, which it occasionally does when asked. Those types of requests are reviewed by senior FBI officials.

During the past few weeks, the AP tracked planes from the FBI’s fleet on more than 100 flights over at least 11 states plus the District of Columbia, most with Cessna 182T Skylane aircraft. These included parts of Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Seattle and Southern California.

Some flights orbited large, enclosed buildings for extended periods where aerial photography would be less effective than electronic signals collection. Those included above Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota.

David Gomez, a former FBI agent who oversaw parts of the aviation surveillance program over the course of his career, said the FBI surveillance aircraft are used to assist surveillance on the ground. For example, if a plane is following a suspect in a vehicle, an FBI ground surveillance team can lag behind so as not to blow their cover, Gomez said.

After The Washington Post revealed flights by two planes circling over Baltimore in early May, the AP began analyzing detailed flight data and aircraft-ownership registrations that shared similar addresses and flight patterns. That review found that some FBI missions circled above at least 40,000 residents during a single flight over Anaheim, California, in late May, according to Census data and records provided by the website FlightRadar24.com.

Most flight patterns occurred in counter-clockwise orbits up to several miles wide and roughly one mile above the ground at slow speeds. A 2003 newsletter from the company FLIR Systems Inc., which makes camera technology such as seen on the planes, described flying slowly in left-handed patterns.

Gomez said the aircraft circle to the left because the pilot sits on the left side. He said different flight formations are used depending on circumstances on the ground, such as whether a suspect is on the move.

The FBI asked the AP not to disclose the names of the fake companies it uncovered, saying that would saddle taxpayers with the expense of creating new cover companies to shield the government’s involvement, and could endanger the planes and integrity of the surveillance missions. The AP declined the FBI’s request because the companies’ names — as well as common addresses linked to the Justice Department — are listed on public documents and in government databases.

Recently, independent journalists and websites have cited companies traced to post office boxes in Virginia, including one shared with the Justice Department.

Included on most aircraft registrations is a mysterious name, Robert Lindley. He is listed as chief executive and has at least three distinct signatures among the companies. Two documents include a signature for Robert Taylor, which is strikingly similar to one of Lindley’s three handwriting patterns.

The FBI would not say whether Lindley is a U.S. government employee. The AP unsuccessfully tried to reach Lindley at phone numbers registered to people of the same name in the Washington area.

Law enforcement officials said Justice Department lawyers approved the decision to create fictitious companies and that the Federal Aviation Administration was aware of the practice. The FBI has been doing this since at least the late 1980s, according to a 1990 report by the then-General Accounting Office.

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Associated Press writers Sean Murphy in Oklahoma City; Joan Lowy and Ted Bridis in Washington; Randall Chase in Wilmington, Delaware; and news researchers Monika Mathur in Washington and Rhonda Shafner in New York contributed to this report.

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View documents: http://apne.ws/1HEyP0t

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Follow on Twitter: Jack Gillum at https://twitter.com/jackgillum, Eileen Sullivan at https://twitter.com/esullivanap and Eric Tucker at https://twitter.com/etuckerap

Best of CH1 2014-2015 Season

During this past season, Channel One reporters traveled all over the world, covering stories in Ferguson, Berlin, Hiroshima and Havana. They interviewed first lady Michelle Obama and activist and Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai. In this video, our reporters share highlights from their favorite stories – watch!

PARIS (AP) — The Latest from the French Open:

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9:15 p.m.

Tournament director Gilbert Ysern says one person was injured by the 3-meter-long (about 9-feet-long) metal panel that fell off a giant television screen above Court Philippe Chatrier during a match.

The tournament issued an earlier statement saying three people were hurt, but Ysern says at a news conference that two of the three taken to get checked at an infirmary were fine. The third had a wrist injury and was taken to a hospital.

Ysern says an investigation is being opened to determine exactly what happened to the panel, in place to protect the TV screen from pigeon droppings.

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8:15 p.m.

“Roland, je t’aime,” wrote Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on the red clay, using the sole of his right shoe. Then he got down on the court, on his back, with arms and legs spread apart, as 15,000 or so of his closest friends stood and roared their approval.

“I love you, Roland,” it meant, a thank you to the French Open fans who willed their countryman Tsonga to a 6-1, 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-3 victory over No. 5-seeded Kei Nishikori of Japan in the quarterfinals.

Tsonga, seeded 14th, moved into his second semifinal at Roland Garros, and his sixth at a major.

He’ll face Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka on Friday for a spot in the final. Not tough to guess who will be the crowd favorite at Court Philippe Chatrier.

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7:29 p.m.

Kei Nishikori has a second wind at the French Open.

The Japanese seemed headed for the exit, down 6-1, 5-2, before a piece of metal paneling crashed in strong winds onto spectators, interrupting his quarterfinal against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

When play resumed about 40 minutes later, Nishikori still lost the second set 6-4. But he then found a new gear and new resolve to take the next two sets 6-4, 6-3.

If he wins, Nishikori will become the first Japanese man in 82 years to contest a French Open semifinal.

The decisive fifth set is underway.

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6:37 p.m.

Au revoir, Roger.

For the third year in a row, Roger Federer is gone from the French Open before the semifinals.

This time, he bows out in the quarterfinals with a 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (4) loss to his pal and Swiss Davis Cup teammate Stan Wawrinka.

Federer had won 16 of their previous 18 matchups, but 2014 Australian Open champion Wawrinka was in control from the start of this one.

Federer’s collection of 17 Grand Slam titles includes the 2009 French Open, part of a stretch where he made it to at least the semifinals seven times in eight years.

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6:03 p.m.

Back to the tennis.

Roger Federer and Kei Nishikori are both on the ropes at the French Open, both down two sets in their respective quarterfinals.

On center court, Nishikori’s opponent, Jo Wilfried-Tsonga, is looking as comfy as a cat on a sofa. Nishikori’s chances of becoming the first Japanese man in 82 years to reach the French Open semis are evaporating fast on this warm, but very windy Parisian spring day. Tsonga is up 6-1, 6-4.

Federer is down 6-4, 6-3 to Stan Wawrinka on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

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5:52 p.m.

Video posted on Twitter here of the falling sheet of metal: https://twitter.com/TrudelSteph/status/605755296309485568

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5:43 p.m.

Drama over, seemingly with no big harm done.

Kei Nishikori and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga are back on the center court in their French Open quarterfinal that was suspended for about 40 minutes after a large piece of metal paneling fell off a giant TV screen in strong winds onto spectators below.

Spectators are trickling back into an area of seating that was temporarily evacuated and closed off while a man climbed onto the giant screen to inspect the back of it.

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5:31 p.m.

Security guards are evacuating spectators — more than 200 of them — from seats under the giant TV screen that shed a large piece of metal paneling in strong winds on the French Open center court during a quarterfinal Tuesday. They also are cordoning off the seating area with red and white tape.

A man is also inspecting the back of the giant screen, used to project match scores and television highlights.

Quarterfinalists Kei Nishikori and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga have been biding their time, waiting to resume their quarterfinal. Tsonga is leading 5-2 in the second set having taken the first set 6-1.

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5:03 p.m.

First-aid workers are assisting a spectator who appears to have been lightly injured by a large piece of paneling that fell off a giant TV screen at the French Open’s center court in strong winds, holding up the quarterfinal between Kei Nishikori and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

First aiders evacuated the man, holding his right wrist. He appeared to be otherwise unscathed, lifting his left arm to wave to the crowd on Court Philippe Chatrier.

The piece of paneling, larger than a bed, crashed down with a bang from a giant screen that overlooks the clay court. It was unclear what caused it to detach, but the wind has been blowing strongly.

The match has been temporarily suspended, and both players have left the court to return to the locker room. A stadium announcer has just announced that the delay will last at least another 10 minutes.

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4:19 p.m.

Reverberations of soccer’s corruption and bribery scandal are being felt at the French Open, with spectators holding up a sign calling for the ouster of FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

Our Associated Press photographer David Vincent spotted the “Out Blatter” sign during Lucie Safarova’s quarterfinal victory against Garbine Muguruza.

You can see his photo here: http://www.apimages.com/metadata/Index/France-Tennis-French-Open-/c618c808724044fdb6af665f4ce86c6d/2/0

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4:09 p.m.

Lucie Safarova is through to her first French Open semifinal, with a hard-won 7-6 (3), 6-3 quarterfinal win against Garbine Muguruza.

Safarova broke Muguruza in the second game of the second set, but was broken straight back in the next game. Safarova then saved a break point with a forehand winner in the fifth game and then broke Muguruza in the sixth game.

Safarova closed out the match with a clean forehand winner.

“First time is ‘wow,'” Safarova said of the prospect of her first semifinal at Roland Garros. She will play the 2008 champion, Ana Ivanovic.

“I’m so excited,” she said. “Amazing.”

She also was a semifinalist at Wimbledon last year.

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3:29 p.m.

Ana Ivanovic is the first player to reach the semifinals at the French Open this year.

The 2008 champion hit a flurry of winners to complete a 6-3, 6-2 win over Elina Svitolina, a 20-year-old from Ukraine who was playing her first quarterfinal at a Grand Slam.

This will be the first semifinal at a major tournament for 27-year-old Ivanovic, ranked seventh, since she won her sole Grand Slam title in Paris.

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3:24 p.m.

In a match of power hitting from the baseline, Lucie Safarova has taken the first set of a closely contested French Open quarterfinal against Garbine Muguruza, winning the tiebreaker 7-3 after neither player broke the other’s serve in 12 games.

Muguruza saved four break points in the seventh game and two more in the 11th game. Safarova pulled away in the tiebreaker, to 3-1, with a forehand winner to end a 26-shot rally.

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2:53 p.m.

Ana Ivanovic is hammering Elina Svitolina with her big forehands on the French Open’s center court.

After they traded breaks early on in extremely windy conditions, Ivanovic raced through the opening set of their quarterfinal in 39 minutes, securing another break in the fourth game. The 2008 champion sealed the set 6-3 by holding at love.

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2:34 p.m.

Of the 256 men and women who started the French Open, just 16 are left.

Most of the quarterfinalists are big names: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Serena Williams. Others could become big by upsetting the tennis hierarchy to reach and — why not? — even win the finals, almost within touching distance now this coming weekend.

Elina Svitolina is a young player to watch, on unfamiliar ground in her first Grand Slam quarterfinal. The 20-year-old from Ukraine, ranked 21st, is out first on Court Philippe Chatrier against an already established star: 2008 French Open champion Ana Ivanovic. The former No. 1 is again watched by her beau, soccer star Bastian Schweinsteiger, a 2014 World Cup winner with Germany.

Against Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, U.S. Open finalist Kei Nishikori is looking to become the first Japanese man in 82 years to reach a French semifinal. They play after Svitolina vs. Ivanovic on the center court.

On Court Suzanne Lenglen, Garbine Muguruza has previously played in just one Grand Slam quarterfinal and Lucie Safarova has played two. Following them is a megastar for whom this is old hat: Federer. The winner of a record 17 major titles plays 2014 Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka.

The first sets are underway.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The FBI is operating a small air force with scores of low-flying planes across the country using video and sometimes cellphone surveillance technology — all hidden behind fictitious companies that are fronts for the government, The Associated Press has learned.

The surveillance equipment is generally used without a judge’s approval, and the FBI says the flights are used for specific investigations. The agency says it uses front companies to protect the safety of the pilots and aircraft, shielding their identities from would-be suspects on the ground.

In a recent 30-day period, an AP review found, the FBI flew above more than 30 cities in 11 states across the country, including parts of Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Seattle, and Southern California.

Aerial surveillance represents a changing frontier for law enforcement, providing what the government maintains is an important tool for investigations. But the program raises questions as new technologies pose intrusive opportunities for government spying.

U.S. law enforcement officials confirmed for the first time the wide-scale use of the aircraft, which the AP traced to at least 13 fake companies registered to post office boxes in Bristow, Virginia. Those include FVX Research, KQM Aviation, NBR Aviation and PXW Services.

“The FBI’s aviation program is not secret,” spokesman Christopher Allen said in a statement. “Specific aircraft and their capabilities are protected for operational security purposes.” Allen added the FBI’s planes “are not equipped, designed or used for bulk collection activities or mass surveillance.”

The FBI does occasionally help local police with aerial support, such as during the recent disturbance in Baltimore that followed the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who sustained grievous injuries while in police custody. Those types of requests are reviewed by senior FBI officials.

The FBI does not generally obtain warrants to record video of people moving outside in the open. But it says it needs warrants to help identify potentially thousands of cellphones below — using what are known as cell-site simulators — even if a user is not making a call or in public. Officials said that practice, which mimics cell towers to get phones to reveal basic subscriber information, is rare.

An FBI spokesman said the flights comply with agency rules, although details are heavily redacted in publicly available documents that discuss limitations and justifications for such surveillance.

“It’s important that federal law enforcement personnel have the tools they need to find and catch criminals,” said Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee. “But whenever an operation may also monitor the activities of Americans who are not the intended target, we must make darn sure that safeguards are in place to protect the civil liberties of innocent Americans.”

Details about the flights come as the Justice Department seeks to navigate privacy concerns arising from aerial surveillance by unmanned aircrafts, or drones. The AP traced at least 50 aircraft back to the FBI, and the agency told Congress in 2010 it had at least 115 planes.

The FBI asked the AP not to disclose the names of the fake companies it uncovered, saying that would saddle taxpayers with the expense of creating new cover companies to shield the government’s involvement, and could endanger the planes and the surveillance missions. The AP declined the FBI’s request because the companies’ names — as well as common addresses linked to the Justice Department — are listed on public documents and in government databases.

Justice Department lawyers approved the decision to create fictitious companies to protect the flights’ operational security and the Federal Aviation Administration was aware of the practice, officials said. The FBI has been careful not to reveal its surveillance flights in court documents.

After The Washington Post revealed flights by two planes circling over Baltimore in early May, the AP began analyzing the mysterious owners behind planes that shared similar addresses and flight patterns.

Independent journalists have also recently cited companies traced to post office boxes in Virginia, including one shared with the Justice Department. The AP had analyzed similar data from the website FlightRadar24.com, while also drawing upon aircraft registration documents, business records and interviews with U.S. officials to understand the scope of the government’s operations.

A Justice Department memo last month expressly barred its component law enforcement agencies from using unmanned drones “solely for the purpose of monitoring activities protected by the First Amendment” and said they are to be used only in connection with authorized investigations and activities.

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Associated Press writers Sean Murphy in Oklahoma City; Joan Lowy and Ted Bridis in Washington; Randall Chase in Wilmington, Delaware; and news researchers Monika Mathur in Washington and Rhonda Shafner in New York contributed to this report.

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View documents: http://apne.ws/1HEyP0t

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Follow on Twitter: Jack Gillum at https://twitter.com/jackgillum, Eileen Sullivan at https://twitter.com/esullivanap and Eric Tucker at https://twitter.com/etuckerap

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A former BP executive manipulated early estimates of the amount of oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico after a 2010 rig explosion to conform to a low government estimate, then lied about it to federal agents, a prosecutor told jurors Tuesday.

Defense attorneys countered that David Rainey’s estimates were the best he could do as he and other BP officials worked to shut down the flow of oil after the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster and that he had no reason to lie roughly a year later when questioned about his calculations.

Rainey is on trial on a single count of making a false statement. Another charge, obstructing a congressional investigation, was tossed out Monday by U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt, although federal prosecutors urged him in papers filed Tuesday to reinstate it.

In Tuesday’s opening statements, federal prosecutor Leo Tsao said the oil flow rate was important information for those working to stop a flow that lasted for 87 days — the nation’s worst offshore oil disaster.

“How big a problem BP had on its hands depended on how much oil was flowing,” Tsao said. He said an early government estimate of 1,000 barrels a day was soon upped to 5,000. It was that second figure that Rainey, a geologist who the government said had no experience calculating flow rates, allegedly tried to match rather than come up with an independent assessment.

Ultimately, a federal judge ruled that roughly 3.19 million barrels spilled before the damaged well was capped after 87 days — a rate of more than 36,000 barrels per day.

Prosecutors say phone text messages prove that Rainey had been told about the 5,000 barrel per day estimate before providing his own calculations. He is said to have lied about having seen the estimate during a 2011 interview with former government investigator Avi Gesser, who was the first witness.

Defense lawyer Brian Heberlig said the government has provided neither a motive nor any proof of criminal intent. Calculating an accurate flow rate in the early days and weeks after the explosion was impossible, Heberlig said. Rainey and other BP and government leaders were focused on trying to stop the spill, he said.

Still, he added, Rainey did the best he could: “His estimates were legitimate and honest.”

Engelhardt said the trial could go to the jury by the end of this week or early next week.

The opening statements at the U.S. District Courthouse fell on the same day a federal appeals court panel heard arguments in another criminal case arising from the disaster. In that case, federal prosecutors hope to win reinstatement of an obstruction of justice conviction against a former BP engineer.

Kurt Mix was convicted on a single criminal count in 2013 after prosecutors said he deliberately deleted text messages about the amount of oil flowing from BP’s Macondo well after the 2010 explosion.

But a judge ruled later that a jury forewoman tainted the deliberations by mentioning to a deadlocked jury that she had heard something outside the trial that affirmed her view of Mix’s guilt.

There was no indication when the 5th Circuit would rule.

In Rainey’s case, Engelhardt threw out the obstruction count after agreeing with congressional lawyers that, under the Constitution, members of Congress and their staffers could not be subpoenaed to testify. Prosecutors said Tuesday that the charge should be reinstated because they have been told by lawyers for the U.S. House that staffers are willing to testify voluntarily. They also said that Sen. Ed Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat who served in the House at the time of the investigation, is willing to testify by video conference while the Senate is in session.

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — Boko Haram once again attacked the northeast Nigerian city of Maiduguri on Tuesday, waking residents with deafening explosions in the early hours of the morning and then a suicide bombing that witnesses said killed as many as 20 people.

The extremist group which seeks to impose Islamic law across northern Nigeria has repeatedly attacked Maiduguri, the largest city in the northeast, since the newly elected president has designated it as the new headquarters in the war to curb the Islamic uprising.

“We are under siege,” Sumaila Ayuba, her voice shaking, told The Associated Press by telephone just after midnight from her home on the city’s western flank after her sleep was shattered by the explosions. “The shooting is quite deafening. Please, we need prayers.”

Hours later, a man blew himself up at Gamboru cattle market, the site of previous bombings, officials said. One witness said he counted at least 20 bodies. The National Emergency Management Agency said 10 people were killed and many others injured. The witness spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.

Some onlookers began stoning the agency’s rescue workers, for unknown reasons. Soldiers fired into the air to disperse the crowd.

Over the weekend, more than 30 people died in another Boko Haram assault involving another suicide bombing and rocket-propelled grenades.

Also Tuesday, Boko Haram released a new video that allegedly shows militants shooting wounded Nigerian soldiers in the head and beheading a man in civilian clothes as well as charred parts claimed to be the remnants of a downed Nigerian jet fighter.

The video, the first released since it pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group, has no sign of longtime leader Abubakar Shekau, previously a mainstay of the group’s videos.

There was no explanation for his absence. Nigeria’s military has claimed many times to have killed Shekau — only to have him later resurface.

In Tuesday’s video, an armed fighter said Boko Haram still holds several northeastern towns and has thousands of fighters — claims impossible to substantiate.

The video gloats over alleged disunity in the multinational force that in March announced it had driven Boko Haram from all towns and villages. Nigerian neighbors Chad and Niger have said the fight against Boko Haram would be long over if they had better cooperation from Nigeria.

President Muhammadu Buhari is traveling to Chad and Niger on Wednesday on his first official trip outside Nigeria, spokesman Garba Shehu said.

The chief of naval staff, Vice Admiral Usman Jibril, said the military chiefs briefed Buhari on the security situation, especially the fight against Boko Haram, and received a presidential directive to move the military headquarters for the fight against the insurgents to Maiduguri.

The uprising has killed some 13,000 people and driven 1.5 million from their homes.

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Faul reported from Lagos, Nigeria. Associated Press writer Bashir Adigun contributed to this report from Abuja, Nigeria.