Nigerian troops in hunt for student massacre suspects

Nigerian troops in hunt for student massacre suspects

KANO- Agence France-Presse
Nigerian troops in hunt for student massacre suspects

Nigerian Emergency Management Agency secure the area after a blast in Zaria which has been blamed on Boko Haram. The group is also suspected in the latest killings. AFP photo

Nigerian soldiers moved house to house yesterday in an urgent bid to hunt down attackers responsible for the massacre of 26 people who were shot or had their throats slit in a student housing area.

The attack in the early hours of Oct. 2 near a polytechnic university shook the town of Mubi, located in Nigeria’s northeast. “The military is going house to house searching,” said Abubakar Ahmed, head of the Red Cross in Adamawa state, where Mubi is located. According to a police spokesman, the attackers knew their victims and called them out by name in a student housing area off-campus of Federal Polytechnic Mubi. Victims were shot or had their throats slit, he said.

Boko Haram suspicion

Motives for the attack remained unclear. In Mubi last week, the military carried out a high-profile raid against militant group Boko Haram, which has been waging a deadly insurgency. The town had already been under a curfew in the wake of raid. But some officials suggested the massacre may have been linked to a recent student election. The suggestion raised questions over how and why the dispute would have turned so violent. There were suggestions of ethnic tensions between the mainly Muslim Hausas and predominately Christian Igbos involved in the vote.

Boko Haram has continually widened its attacks have become increasingly sophisticated. Nigerian officials have been seeking to show success in the fight against Boko Haram with a number of raids and arrests. There had been a lull in major attacks in recent weeks. The extremists have been blamed for more than 1,400 deaths since 2010 in Nigeria.


BAMAKO – The Associated Press

Radical extremists in northern Mali executed a man who had been accused of killing someone, a punishment that was witnessed by about 600 people in the town of Timbuktu on Oct. 2.

The public execution was the latest move by the militants to impose their strict interpretation of Islamic Shariah law. Previously the Islamists have stoned to death a couple accused of adultery, and carried out at least eight amputations. The al-Qaeda-linked militants seized control of northern Mali earlier this year, taking advantage of a power vacuum in the distant capital back in March when mutinous soldiers overthrew the democratically elected government.