Nigerian police announced yesterday that Boko Haram Islamic extremists are suspected of being behind two separate attacks carried out by suicide bombers in which three people were killed in the north east of the country. One of the attacks was carried out by two women whilst three men carried out the second attack. All of the attackers were killed in the attacks. This is a clear escalation of violence weeks after President Muhammadu Buhari announced that Boko Haram fighters had been ousted from their last stronghold in the north-east where the group is fighting to establish an Islamic state.
The bombings which were carried out late on Sunday in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state where the Boko Haram insurgency began, followed a bloody clash on Saturday in which five soldiers and more than 15 jihadist fighters died in the neighbouring state of Yobe.
Maiduguri police said the women bombers killed two people there late on Sunday evening shortly after the male group had killed one person in the city. Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attacks but they bear the hallmarks of Boko Haram.
The sound of several explosions was heard in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state, where the Boko Haram insurgency began seven years ago. It has killed about 15,000 people and displaced more than 2 million people.
Boko Haram controlled an area about the size of Belgium in early 2015. It has been pushed out of most of that region over the past year by Nigeria’s army and troops from neighbouring countries, and has moved to a base in the Sambisa forest in Borno state.