Boko Haram claims weekend suicide attacks around Nigerian capital

2015-10-05 11:58

Lagos - Nigerian militant group Boko Haram on Monday claimed responsibility for multiple suicide bombings that killed 18 people around the country's capital Abuja at the start of the weekend.

"West Africa Province, the division of the Islamic State formerly known as Boko Haram, claimed credit for three suicide bombings in the Nigerian capital," the group said in a statement published by the SITE Intelligence Group.

Fifteen people died in the town of Kuje, situated 40km south-west of the capital, while three others died in the Nyanya suburb, in the bombings which happened within minutes of each other late on Friday.

Police spokesperson Olabisi Kolawole said preliminary investigations revealed that suicide bombers were responsible for the incident.

Nigeria has been hit by a spate of bombings in recent years, largely blamed on the militant group Boko Haram.

On Thursday, four female suicide bombers killed at least 14 people in Maiduguri in north-eastern Nigeria, according to an army spokesperson.

This is the first time Abuja has been bombed since President Muhammadu Buhari came to power on May 29.

"The Armed Forces have been empowered to crush what remains of Boko Haram," Buhari said after the attacks.

"This government is determined to stamp out Boko Haram and all other terrorists of whatever persuasions and bring all sponsors to justice."

Boko Haram, which seeks to establish a state with a strict interpretation of Islamic law, has killed an estimated 14 000 people since 2009.

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