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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 19 June 2018

Nigeria triple suicide attack kills 13 people

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack

In this picture, taken on August 15, 2017, an injured victim of a suicide bomber arrives in an ambulance for medical attention at a Maiduguri hospital in northeast Nigeria. On Sunday night, 13 people were killed in the city by three female suicide bombers. AFP
In this picture, taken on August 15, 2017, an injured victim of a suicide bomber arrives in an ambulance for medical attention at a Maiduguri hospital in northeast Nigeria. On Sunday night, 13 people were killed in the city by three female suicide bombers. AFP

Thirteen people were killed and 16 were injured in the northeast Nigerian city of Maiduguri by three female suicide bombers, a security source said.

The first bomber detonated her explosive belt at around 9.45pm local time near a small restaurant in the capital of Borno state "when people were buying their dinner", the source told Agence France-Presse on condition of anonymity.

Minutes later, two other bombers struck, resulting in the injured. An armed militia leader said that the attack came "hours after reports of sighting of a lot of Boko Haram members outside the city".

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

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The Boko Haram conflict has left at least 20,000 dead and forced more than 2.6 million others to flee their homes since 2009.

Roads to and from Maiduguri are nominally open to traffic, but in reality, vehicles require a military escort because of the risk of attack.

Nigeria's military and government maintain that Boko Haram is a spent force as a result of sustained counterinsurgency operations against the militants since early 2015.

Deadly attacks have dropped in recent weeks, which security sources attribute to renewed military offensives after the end of the rainy season in September.

The United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs warned on Friday that "attacks against civilians — including suicide bombings in and near IDP (internally displaced person) camps — continue to be a major concern".