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More Than 60 Killed Monday in Nigeria Attacks

  • VOA News

Vigilante barricade a road after two explosions occurred at a market in Maiduguri, Nigeria, Dec. 1, 2014.

Vigilante barricade a road after two explosions occurred at a market in Maiduguri, Nigeria, Dec. 1, 2014.

Sources in Nigeria say more than 60 people were killed Monday in attacks by suspected Islamist militants on two state capitals.

A hospital morgue worker says at least 59 people died in the fighting in the Yobe state capital of Damaturu. The worker, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity, said the bodies of 33 police officers, six soldiers and 20 militants were brought to the hospital.

Witnesses say at least five others were killed when two explosions ripped through a market in the Borno state capital of Maiduguri. The attack was believed to be the work of two female suicide bombers.

Two other young women blew themselves at the same market last week, killing dozens of people.

There was no claim of responsibility for either attack, but suspicion fell on militant group Boko Haram, which has launched many similar raids and suicide bombings across northeastern Nigeria.

The shadowy group is blamed for thousands of deaths over the past five years. It has seized control of several towns in Borno and Adamawa states for what it calls an Islamic caliphate.

Damaturu remained in Nigerian government hands Tuesday, however, after militants tried to take over key installations, including a police station and the governor's office. Security forces used a helicopter gunship to help drive off the attackers.

Authorities in Damaturu have declared a 24-hour curfew while soldiers search the town for stray insurgents.

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