24 Oct 2015

Bombs kill scores at Nigerian mosques

10:51 am on 24 October 2015

Two bomb attacks in north-eastern Nigeria have left at least 42 people dead and more than 100 injured, officials say.

The aftermath of a bombing during Friday prayers at a mosque in Maiduguri.

The aftermath of a bombing during Friday prayers at a mosque in Maiduguri, northeast Nigeria. Photo: AFP

At least 27 people were killed when a bomb targeted a newly opened mosque in the town of Yola.

Earlier, 15 people were killed in a suicide bombing in Maiduguri, capital of Borno state, early on Friday morning as worshippers arrived for dawn prayers.

An eyewitness said there was one suicide bomber involved.

No one claimed responsibility but the bombings bear the hallmarks of extremist Islamist group Boko Haram.

The insurgency, which grew out of Borno, has carried out many attacks in the area, targetting Muslims who do not adhere to their ideology, as well as Christians.

The second, larger blast targeted worshippers attending Friday prayers at the mosque in Yola, the capital of Adamawa state.

Alhaji Saad Bello, from the National Emergency Management Agency, said 96 people were being treated in hospital.

"I cannot really say whether it was a suicide bomber or not."

Alhaji Abubakar Jimeta, a survivor, said the mosque had attracted many worshippers for Friday prayers because it had only been built recently. He said the bomb had gone off in a parking lot in front of the mosque.

The latest bombings raise new security concerns after a wave of similar attacks. Maiduguri has now been hit six times this month, killing a total of 76 people, AFP reports.

Boko Haram, which wants to create a hardline Islamic state in Nigeria's north-east, has killed thousands and displaced 2.1 million people.

It is believed about 1000 people have been killed since the president, Muhammadu Buhari, took office in May.

The group has reverted to hitting soft targets such as markets, bus stations and places of worship since losing most of the territory it seized earlier this year.

- BBC, Reuters