80 people killed in Boko Haram attacks in Nigeria
Published 28/12/2015 | 00:16
At least 50 people have died after Boko Haram Islamic extremists struck the Nigerian city of Maiduguri with rocket-propelled grenades and multiple suicide bombers.
Another twin suicide bombing killed at least 30 people in Madagali, a town 95 miles south-east of Maiduguri, witnesses said.
Danladi Buba said two women detonated at a market near a busy bus station and Brigadier General Victor Ezugwu, the officer commanding in north-east Adamawa State, confirmed the attack but said casualties have yet to be established.
In Maiduguri, the capital of neighbouring Borno state, at least 30 were killed and more than 90 wounded in overnight blasts and shoot-outs, and another 20 died in a bombing outside a mosque at dawn on Monday, said Muhammed Kanar, area co-ordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency.
The military said there were multiple attacks at four south-western entry points to the city.
In another blast, two girls blew themselves up in Buraburin neighbourhood, killing several people, according to civil servant Yunusa Abdullahi.
The attack appears to be a challenge to President Muhammadu Buhari's declaration last week that Boko Haram has been "technically" defeated, capable of no more than suicide bombings on soft targets.
Acting on information provided by a captured insurgent, Nigerian troops "intercepted and destroyed" 13 suicide bombers and arrested one female suicide bomber in repelling the attackers, Major General Lamidi Adeosun, the commander prosecuting Nigeria's war against Boko Haram, told reporters.
Maiduguri, the city under attack, is the birthplace of Boko Haram, which emerged as a much more radical entity after Nigerian security forces launched an all-out assault on their compound in the city, killing 700 people in 2009.
Militants firing indiscriminately from the back of three trucks attacked the outlying village of Dawari, soldiers engaged them, and as people were fleeing, a woman ran into the area yelling "Boko Haram, Boko Haram". When people gathered, she detonated herself, according to village head Bulama Isa.
A rocket-propelled grenade then exploded, setting alight grass-thatched huts, and a second woman blew herself up, according to Isa.
Among those killed was the village chief and 10 of his children, according to residents Ahmed Bala and Umar Ibrahim.
A soldier said the insurgents fired rocket-propelled grenades into four residential areas on the outskirts of the city.
Three suicide bombers blew themselves up at a home near Bakassi Estate, killing 18 people on Sunday evening, another soldier told The Associated Press.