Boko Haram militants on Tuesday showed they are still deadly despite being pummeled by Nigeria. troops in the NorthEast of Nigeria as they hit explosion in the northeastern Nigerian town of Potiskum killed at least 17 people on Tuesday, the second attack to hit the area this week.
Witnesses said dozens more were wounded in Tuesday morning’s blast, which struck a bus that was preparing to depart for Kano around noon local time.
Authorities said it unclear whether the bomber was wearing the explosives or had them hidden in luggage.
In northern Nigeria’s biggest city of Kano, a police source told Reuters that suicide bombing in a crowded bus park killed 10 people.
There was no claim of responsibility for either blast, but both bore the hallmarks of militant group Boko Haram. The group has made increasing use of young female suicide bombers in the past year.
It follows a suicide bombing in Potiskum, the commercial capital of Yobe state, on Sunday, in which a young girl killed herself and five others.
Witnesses described the girl as being no more than 8 years old. Authorities said at least 19 people were injured in that blast.
Boko Haram has often used young female suicide bombers in the past year. In addition, the Nigerian military said some male terrorists have begun wearing women’s clothing to fool security officials.
Boko Haram has suffered a series of defeats this month in a campaign led by Nigeria and its neighbors, Cameroon, Niger and Chad.
But the continuing violence recently forced Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan to postpone the country’s presidential and parliamentary elections for six weeks, until March 28.
In an interview published Sunday in the ThisDay newspaper, the Nigerian leader acknowledged he and his government underestimated the strength of Boko Haram.
“Probably at the beginning, we, and I mean myself and the team, we underrated the capacity of Boko Haram,” Jonathan said.
He said his military has recently secured more weapons and ammunition to fight Boko Haram. He vowed to soon suppress the insurgents and, “God willing,” capture its leader, Abubakar Shekau, before the election.
Boko Haram, which means “Western education is forbidden,” has killed thousands of Nigerians in the past five years in attacks on schools, towns, markets, churches, mosques and various government targets.
It has expanded its deadly campaign to gain territory for an Islamic state into other countries in the region.
VOA with materials ffrom Reuters and AFP.