Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Boko Haram suspected to be behind bomb blasts

Reports have emerged that at least 10 people have been killed in the northern Nigerian city of Maiduguri when a number of police stations were attacked by suspected Boko Haram militants.

Police Commissioner Mohammed Abubakar said Boko Haram members detonated bombs at two police stations, Gwange Police Divisional Headquaters and that of Dandal, and St. Patrick's Church. He said 10 people died in the explosions, including three suspected members of the group and a soldier.

The attacks come just a day after a prominent Muslim cleric, Ibrahim Birkuti, was shot dead by a suspected Boko Haram gunman on a motorcycle. Birkuti had previously openly criticised the Islamic group for killing dozens of security agents and politicians in recent months near the city of Maiduguri.

It is believed that the explosions occurred shortly after Governor Hashim Shettima addressed the House of Assembly and visited the Musa Usman state secretariat, near St Patrick's Church.

Last week, Boko Haram told the BBC it had carried out a series of bombings after President Goodluck Jonathan's inauguration. The group's spokesman said Boko Haram was also responsible for killing the brother of one of Nigeria's most important Islamic leaders.

Sources: BBC News, The National Newspaper, Daily Independent

For more news and expert analysis about Nigeria, please see Nigeria Focus and Nigeria Politics & Security.

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