Suicide bomber girls kill three in new Boko Haram blast

Two 10-year-old girls blew themselves up in a busy market, the second horrific attack in days using children by the jihadi extremist group Boko Haram in Nigeria.

The two young girls were strapped with explosives, according to eyewitnesses to the blast at an open market selling mobile phones in the town of Potiskum in Yobe state.

A trader at the market, Sani Abdu Potiskum, said: “I saw their dead bodies. They are two young girls of about 10 years of age … you only see the plaited hair and part of the upper torso,” the trader said.

Three people besides the bombers were killed while 46 were injured.

The town was hit by a suicide bomber in November when at least 48 people, mainly students, were killed during a school assembly.

On Saturday, a bomb exploded at a police station in Potiskum.

Yesterday’s explosions came a day after a bomb strapped to a girl aged around 10 exploded in a busy market place in the Nigerian city of Maiduguri, killing at least 16 people and injuring more than 20.

Boko Haram has been waging a five-year insurgency to establish an Islamic state in the northeast of the country and the army’s inability to quash the movement is a headache for President Goodluck Jonathan, who is seeking re-election in February.

Last year more than 10,000 people died in the violence, according to an estimate by the Council on Foreign Relations

The military lost ground in worst-hit Borno state last weekend after insurgents took over the town of Baga and nearby army base, killing over 100 people and forcing thousands to flee.

In the city of Jos in Plateau state, Jonathan’s campaign team was hit by two days of violence.

The driver of a campaign vehicle was killed yesterday by youths who also set fire to a police station, police spokesman Abu Sunday Emmanuel said.

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