Boko Haram attacks leave 13 dead, dozens hurt in Nigeria

2017-06-08 17:50
File: AFP

File: AFP

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Maiduguri - At least 13 people are dead, including four attackers, and more than 24 others are wounded after Boko Haram extremists launched coordinated attacks on the capital of Borno state, police said on Thursday.

It was believed to be the worst assault on Maiduguri in months.

Nigeria's president late last year declared the extremist group had been crushed but attacks continue, often with young women strapped into explosives for suicide attacks.

The attacks came just hours before acting president Yemi Osinbajo visited Maiduguri to launch a food relief program for thousands of people who have fled their homes in the wake of Boko Haram attacks in the region.

The jihadists attacked late on Wednesday as evening prayers were ending, targeting four locations around the city. The violence came as soldiers were trying to repel another group of Boko Haram insurgents who were trying to invade.

Extremists fought with soldiers in Alidawari village and Jiddari Polo suburb, where homes were set on fire, said Police Commissioner Damian Chukwu. Nigerian forces killed three Boko Haram insurgents, he said, and one attacker was captured alive. He said 13 people, including four attackers, were killed.

Boko Haram often uses diversionary tactics to draw security forces to one area so that the extremists can attack elsewhere.

The attacks inside Maiduguri took place in various locations around the Chad Basin Development Authority headquarters just before 21:00, resident Alhaji Bashir said.

The targets included a mosque, the research institute, an area inside the authority quarters and another area near a college, he said.

Young members of a civilian defense group, who have come together to combat the Islamic extremists, saw one suicide bomber at the headquarters. "One of the youth vigilantes rushed to hold him, and the bomb went off and killed the suicide bomber and three other persons," Bashir said.

In the attack opposite the college, a female suicide bomber entered a crowd of worshippers leaving prayers and detonated her explosives, he said.

Dozens of injured people filled the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital on Thursday morning, said Abba Shehu, a private security worker.

"It is a horrible sight we have here," he said. "I could not count the number of injured casualties at the accident and emergency ward, most of them sitting on the floor as the place is crowded and no beds to properly admit them."

Read more on:    boko haram  |  nigeria  |  west africa

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