Gunmen Kill 44, Injure Many In Borno

Channels Television  
Updated August 13, 2013

At least 44 people have been shot dead at a mosque in north-eastern Nigeria, officials in Borno state say.

Men dressed in military camouflage arrived in Konduga town on Sunday morning and shot or hacked to death dozens of people returning from morning prayers, two residents said.

“They took everybody by surprise with the attack,” a military joint task force source told Reuters, asking not to be named. “They killed many people, the victims are more than 30 but I cannot confirm the exact number.”

A hospital source told Reuters that 26 wounded people were receiving treatment after the attack in Konduga, a town around 25 km (15 miles) from Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state.

In mid-May, President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency and launched an offensive against the group in its stronghold in the northeast. The insurgency was initially weakened but remains active, and guerrilla-style attacks persist.

The group’s leader, Abubakar Shekau, said in a videodistributed to journalists on Monday that his fighters had carried out several attacks in Borno state in recent weeks where “soldiers fled under our heavy firepower”.

“We have killed countless soldiers and we are going to kill more. Our strength and firepower has surpassed that of Nigeria. We can now comfortably confront the United States of America,” he boasted in the local Hausa language.