Twin bomb­ings kill scores as mil­i­tants flex mus­cle

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

AT LEAST 44 peo­ple were killed in twin bomb blasts in the cen­tral Nige­rian city of Jos, emer­gency ser­vices said on Mon­day, af­ter a wave of mass ca­su­alty at­tacks blamed on Boko Haram mil­i­tants.

Sun­day’s bomb­ings took the death toll from raids, ex­plo­sions and sui­cide at­tacks to 267 this month alone and to 524 since Muham­madu Buhari be­came Pres­i­dent on May 29, ac­cord­ing to an AFP count. The for­mer army gen­eral has vowed to crush the Is­lamists and is eye­ing the de­ploy­ment of a strength­ened re­gional force at the end of this month. But with the toll ris­ing, at­tacks in­creas­ing and the mil­i­tary seem­ingly un­able to pre­vent at­tacks on civil­ians, he will be un­der pres­sure to act fast.

On Mon­day evening, a girl thought to be aged 13 blew her­self up near a mosque in the north­ern city of Kano as wor­ship­pers gath­ered for prayers, but caused no deaths or in­juries.

Sun­day’s deadly blasts hap­pened within min­utes of each other at a shop­ping com­plex and near a mosque in the re­li­giously di­vided cap­i­tal of Plateau state, which the rebels have tar­geted be­fore.

“At the mo­ment we have 44 bod­ies and 47 oth­ers in­jured from the scenes of the two at­tacks,” Mo­hammed Ab­dul­salam, from the Na­tional Emer­gency Man­age­ment Agency said.

Umar Abubakar, who was

at

the Yan­taya mosque for the “Taf­sir” or Ko­ran com­men­tary ses­sion, said a num­ber of at­tack­ers opened fire from out­side about 9.20pm.

“They fire an RPG ( rocket- pro­pelled grenade) at the mosque but it hit a me­tal bar on the fa­cade and ex­ploded,” he said. “Many peo­ple were killed and in­jured from the shoot­ing and the ex­plo­sion. The sec­ond at­tack tar­geted a res­tau­rant in a com­plex pop­u­lar with trav­ellers from the north­east.

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