VOA

VOA

Suspected Islamist militants have killed nearly 30 people in two villages near Chibok, the northern Nigerian town where hundreds of school girls were kidnapped last month.

Witnesses in Alagarno says gunmen stormed their village overnight Tuesday and killed at least 17 people. They say the attackers also stole food and set homes on fire.

Residents in nearby Shawa say gunmen killed at least 10 people during a Monday attack.

Word of the attacks surfaced on Wednesday, a day after two bombings in the central city of Jos killed at least 118 people. The two explosions, just minutes apart, occured in a busy market area.

No one has claimed responsibility. But suspicion immediately fell on Boko Haram — the Islamist extremist group blamed for thousands of deaths over the past five years.

The group has said it wants to establish a strict Islamic state in the country’s north, but an adviser to Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan says the militants have a broader motive.
Boko Haram

“The objective is to destabilize Nigeria, destabilize West Africa and target other countries. And, the activities of that group have shown very clearly that this is a group that constitutes a threat to our civilization,” Abati said. “This is a group that constitutes a threat to our democracy. This is a group that constitutes a threat to our common humanity and the bonds that tie us together.”

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan called Tuesday’s bombings in Jos “cruel and evil,” and said he is fully committed to winning the war on terrorism.

On Tuesday, Nigerian lawmakers voted to extend a state of emergency for six months in the northeast, where Boko Haram is most active.

President Jonathan declared the state of emergency last year and sent thousands of troops to combat the militant group. However, large-scale attacks on schools, markets, military bases and other targets have continued.

Boko Haram kidnapped more than 300 girls from a school in Chibok in mid-April. Two hundred seventy six of those girls remain missing.

Source: VOA