Islamist terrorists used explosives and heavy guns in an atrocious double-pronged attack that killed at least 100 civilians in Nigeria's northeast on Sunday. One attack took place in the village of Kawuri in Borno state, and the other targeted worshippers during a Christian church service in Adamawa state.
Over 50 gunmen reportedly entered Kawuri after launching their assault near the weekly market as vendors were packing up on Sunday night, a security official said. Fifty-two people died and 16 were wounded. The entire village was burned down, including 300 homes. Two explosive devices that were left behind went off Monday morning, narrowly missing security personnel who were collecting bodies in Kawuri.
The official blamed suspected Boko Haram Islamists for the attack.
Also on Sunday, terrorists stormed a church during a Sunday morning service in Wada Chakawa village, in Adamawa state, south of Borno.
They fired guns, set off explosives and took residents hostage, said Rev. Raymond Danbouye, a spokesman for the Catholic Diocese of Yola. He said about two dozen people were murdered and that they were buried on Monday.
Local Chairman Maina Ularamu said officials recovered 45 bodies, including those of two police officers. He urged calm, saying: "I believe security operatives are on top of the situation."
The Boko Haram terrorists set off explosives and fired into the church, then burned houses and took residents hostage during a five-hour siege, residents said. Some people were reportedly taken away and later killed.
General Rogers Nicholas, commander of a local brigade said officials were still tallying the death toll and that troops were deployed to track the attackers. The latest estimates put the total carnage at 100 or more.
Nearly 200 people have been killed this month in attacks attributed to the Boko Haram network in the northestern Nigerian area. A January 14 car bomb exploded in Maiduguri, killing about 70 people. Officials blamed Boko Haram, though the state governor suggested it was the work of his political opponents.
Other attacks have forced the flight of hundreds of villagers in about 30 farming communities around Maiduguri. Some of the displaced are camping on the outskirts of the state capital. More than 5,000 refugees from the violence have fled to Cameroon and Niger this month, the UN said last week.