Damaturu, Nigeria – In a sudden surge of violence, the militant group Boko Haram has perpetrated a deadly attack on mourners in Yobe state, Nigeria, resulting in the deaths of 37 individuals, as confirmed by local police authorities.
According to NAM News Network, the series of attacks commenced when Boko Haram militants targeted a group of mourners returning from a funeral. The victims had been paying their respects to individuals who had perished in a previous assault by the same jihadist group. The mourners encountered a lethal trap when their vehicle detonated an explosive device planted by the insurgents, resulting in 20 fatalities.
Subsequent to this tragedy, on Monday, the militants executed a planned shooting attack on the village of Gurokayeya, where they killed 17 villagers. Police reports indicate that the motive behind these assaults was the villagers’ refusal to submit to a demanded “harvest tax,” a strategy frequently employed by Boko Haram to finance their operations and impose dominion over regional communities.
Idris Geidam, a local resident, described the attack on the burial attendees as one of the most heinous actions of Boko Haram in recent times, compounding the grief of those mourning previous losses with this brutal attack.
Dungus Abdulkarim, a spokesperson for the Yobe police, elaborated that half of the victims from the burial group died at the scene of the explosion, while the rest succumbed to their injuries after being taken to a medical facility for emergency care. These incidents all took place within the span of two consecutive days, with the roadside bombing occurring on Tuesday following the deadly incursion into Gurokayeya village on Monday.
The resurgence of violence by Boko Haram in Yobe marks the first significant operation by the group in the region after a dormant period of over a year. State officials are currently operating under the premise that the attackers migrated into Yobe from the neighboring Borno state, a territory where the group has executed numerous attacks against civilians this year and which remains largely unsafe for travel due to the ongoing insurgency threat.
Since Boko Haram commenced its insurrection in 2009, the conflict has led to the displacement of over two million individuals, as reported by aid agencies. The militant organization, whose name translates to “Western education is forbidden,” has consistently targeted educational institutions in a bid to impose its version of Islamic law. The group achieved global infamy following its abduction of over 200 schoolgirls from the northeastern town of Chibok in 2014.