Nigeria steps up security in restive Maiduguri

Last Updated: Tuesday, February 21, 2012 - 22:17

Abuja: Nigeria on Tuesday stepped up security in
the restive northeastern city of Maiduguri with the military
launching patrolling, a day after radical sect Boko Haram
launched a revenge attack killing 30 people.

Militants of the radical Muslim sect attacked a market in
the city yesterday in which at least eight militants were also
killed in the ensuing gunbattle with security forces.

Militants of Boko Haram launched a revenge attack on the
market where one of their members was killed by an irate mob
seven days ago, locals said.

The markets in the city opened today but security forces
shut all entry gates except one directly overlooking a police
station. Funerals of victims of yesterday`s attack took place
as authorities in the city stepped up security with the
military launching patrolling.

The militants threw several explosives into the market
and some other parts of the city and launched gunfire, killing
and wounding indiscriminately before the military intervened.

Hospital workers said the number of dead people could be
up to 30.

While a resident said that at least 15 persons were
killed in the ensuing gun battle with the military, the Joint
Task Force (JTF) said it had killed only eight members of the
sect.

"We saw about three pick up vans loaded with people in
front of Ibrahim Taiwo Police Station, opposite the Baga
Market this afternoon shortly after the gun battle with
members of the sect, but we cannot tell whether they were
corpses or those wounded," a source at the market said.

"Our men who arrived at the market engaged members of the
Boko Haram sect in gun battle and we successfully killed eight
of the sect members where we recovered weapons as well as
detonated some IEDs," Lt Col Hassan Mohammed said.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, February 21, 2012 - 22:17

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