Boko Haram: Six Female Suicide Bombers Kill Scores In Borno
Scores of people were killed on Friday night at Zabarmari village, 10 kilometres from Maiduguri, Borno State, by six female suicide bombers who blew themselves up amid panicked villagers fleeing an attack by Boko Haram terrorists, the army and witnesses said yesterday.
The carnage caps a week in which the sect killed about 200 people in separate attacks in the state, the bloodiest being Wednesday night’s attacks on residents of Kukawa as they gathered in mosques for Ramadan prayers.
But Boko Haram fighters were given a bloody nose on the same Friday night during a fresh attempt to invade Maiduguri.
The attack was smashed by soldiers who were supported by the vigilance group, otherwise known as Civilian JTF.
A Sport Utility Van (SUV) full of Improvised Explosives Devises (IEDs) was recovered by troops after the Zabarmari assault.
The Defence Headquarters confirmed the suicide bombing, saying:”a total of six suicide bombers had detonated themselves around the garage killing scores of people while some people were also wounded. A soldier also died.”
“Military explosives ordinance experts backed by police bomb disposal units are continuing with vigorous search for any bombs that might have been hidden or left unexploded in the area,” the Director of Defence Information, Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade said.
He added that more troops and equipments were being dispatched to the state to stop the terrorists.
Local resident Haladu Musa, who fled the attack, told AFP that “large numbers” of fighters poured into the village, overpowering soldiers deployed to prevent the insurgents reaching Maiduguri.
“The soldiers were forced to retreat,” he said.
Then, as people began to flee, female suicide bombers started blowing themselves up in their midst, killing large numbers of people, he said.
“Most of the casualties came from the suicide bombings,” he said, without being able to give a precise figure for the dead and injured.
Musa said the militants looted shops and torched “almost half the village” before eventually being repulsed after the military sent in reinforcements.
Sources said the extremists who attempted to invade Maiduguri had converged on Koshebe village, close to Zabarmari in Jere Local Government Area from where they began to fire in the direction of Maiduguri at about 8pm on Friday.
There were at least 10 massive explosions sending frightened residents of Zabarmari to flee to Maiduguri.
Maiduguri residents themselves could not sleep on account of the heavy firing.
Soldiers and the vigilance group members responded promptly to the attack.
It was not immediately clear how many people died in the battle.
However, an eye-witness, Maimala Shehu said he saw volunteers evacuating corpses and the wounded apparently to the hospital.
Separate reports said Boko Haram members also attacked Bama and Koshebe village in Mafa Local Government Area on the same night.
On Wednesday night, Boko Haram terrorists gunned down up to 148 worshippers as they gathered in mosques in Kukawa for Ramadan prayers, shot women in their homes and dragged men and boys from their beds to kill them.
President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the attacks as “inhuman and barbaric” and again vowed to end the Islamists’ six-year-old insurgency which has killed at least 15,000 people and displaced 1.5 million others.