Boko Haram brutally massacred nearly 200 people Friday in northeastern Nigeria in a killing spree that continued Saturday.

The carnage began Friday when extremists gunned down Muslims at evening prayers, shot women in their homes, and dragged men from their beds, the AP reports.

"Large numbers" of fighters poured in and overpowered government forces intent on stopping them from taking the state capitol of Maiduguri, said local resident Haladu Musa to AFP.

The fighting all took place within six miles of Maiduguri, Boko Haram's birthplace, which the jihadis seemed determined to take.

Nigerian troops battled "hordes of Boko Haram gunmen" throughout the night, reports indicate.

Female suicide bombers then detonated themselves amid the panicked, fleeing villagers Saturday and killed scores, army and witnesses told Yahoo News Saturday. "Most of the casualties came from the suicide bombings," Musa said.

"A total of six suicide bombers detonated themselves ... killing scores of people while some people were also wounded. A soldier also died," the Nigerian army said in a statement, reported Yahoo News.

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari called Boko Haram's actions a "heinous atrocity which must be unreservedly condemned by all people of conscience" and said the killings were "inhuman and barbaric" in a statement. The latest bloodshed is the worst since Buhari took office in May.

The militant Islamist group has waged a six-year battle to create an Islamic state in northeast Nigeria's Borno State, killing over 15,000 people and displacing 1.5 million.