Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Bomb blast hits market in Nigeria's Maiduguri, 50 killed

(Reuters) A bomb blast at a busy meat market in the northeastern Nigerian city of Maiduguri on Tuesday killed about 50 people, an eyewitness and hospital sources said, in an attack that bore the hallmarks of Islamist Boko Haram militants.

Boko Haram has killed thousands of people and displaced some 1.5 million in an insurgency to establish an Islamic caliphate in the northeast of Nigeria but appears to have lost most of the territory it seized to government counter-offensives this year.

The bomb, which was concealed under a butcher's table in the market, went off at around 1 p.m. (0800 ET), killing shoppers and passersby, a military source said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which followed two weekend bombings that killed at least 30 people and appeared to be the handiwork of Boko Haram.

Meanwhile, a video purporting to show Boko Haram militants and featuring an unidentified hooded speaker was posted on social media websites on Tuesday.

The speaker accused Nigeria and three adjacent states that have combined to fight the Islamist militants - Niger, Chad and Cameroon - of lying about recent military successes that they said had pushed the jihadists back into a rural pocket.