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Abandoned Boko Haram Explosives Kill Scores in Borno

Yesterday,improvised explosive devices (IEDs) abandoned by suspected Boko Haram insurgents killed scores of people in Monguno, a town in Borno state. A security source confirmed the attack to Newsintels, saying most of the victims were women and children. “There is no clear information about the causalities but women and children were the main victims,” he said. However, there are conflicting reports on the casualties. While Abdullahi Amadu, a vigilante leader, pegged the death toll at 12, Haruna Bukar, an operative of the vigilante group of Nigeria (VGN) who claimed to have witnessed the incident, told reporters that 63 people died in the attack. “We lost 12 members in the accidental explosion, which also injured 40 others,” Amadu said. “We have brought seven of the dead to Maiduguri this morning (Wednesday) and left five others behind in Monguno.” On his part, Bukar blamed the incident on the “carelessness of a group of civilian-JTF” on patrol along Monguno-Marte route. “When they found the bag containing what later turned out to be improvised explosives, they brought it to Monguno town where people gathered to take a look at it,” he said. “As they were busy fiddling with the content of the bag, the bombs went off with a massive blast that killed about 63 persons and injured dozen others.” An officer of the VGN in Maiduguri, Abbas Gava, also spoke to journalists about the incident. “Initially we thought it was a Boko Haram attack as it was being rumored in the town of Maiduguri,” he said. “But when we later checked, we discovered that it was somehow an accidental explosion caused by the foolishness of the Civilian-JTF operatives who discovered such a dangerous device and refused to call on the police or the military that can handle such things.” Efforts to confirm the development from Gideon Jubrin, public relations officer of the Borno state police command, did not yield any result as he did not respond to calls and text messages. The latest attack comes about 24 hours after eight policemen were killed under a similar circumstance in the Damboa local government area of the state.

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