Suicide blasts kill at least three in NE Nigeria

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Two female suicide bombers suspected to be Boko Haram jihadists killed at least three people in northeast Nigeria, emergency services said Monday.

The bombers detonated their explosives inside a house and near a mosque in the Mashamari area of Konduga, 35km southeast of the Borno State capital Maiduguri, on Sunday evening.

"Three people were killed in the two attacks and seven others were injured," Bello Danbatta, chief security officer of the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), told AFP.

"One of them detonated near a mosque while residents were preparing for the evening prayers and moments later the second one detonated inside a house," said Danbatta, who was involved in evacuation of the victims.

But Ibrahim Liman, of the civilian militia force assisting the military against Boko Haram, said two more victims died on the way to the hospital in Maiduguri, raising the death toll to five.

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The attack came two weeks after five militia members were killed by a male bomber who detonated explosives concealed on him at a checkpoint outside Konduga.

Boko Haram's nine-year violence to create a hardline Islamic state has killed 20 000 people and displaced 2.6 million from their homes in Nigeria.

The violence has spilled into neighbouring Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

Although the militant group has been considerably weakened in a regional fightback mustering troops from Nigeria and its neighbours, attacks persist.

The jihadists have resorted to the use of suicide bombers, mostly women and girls, targeting military checkpoints, mosques, markets, bus stations, schools and other crowded places.

On May 1 at least 86 people were killed in twin suicide blasts targeting a mosque and a nearby market in the town of Mubi in neighbouring Adamawa state.

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