Nigeria Blasts in Northeast Town Kills Dozens, Residents Say

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Twin explosions at a market in the northeastern Nigerian city of Gombe on Thursday left dozens of people dead, according to local residents.

“I saw rescue workers and security agents mobilizing to evacuate the dead and injured,” said Ali Chiroma. A market trader, Shehu Bamanga, said by phone that he counted more than 20 bodies. Another trader, Mallam Ibrahim Mohammed, said as many as 50 people died.

The market was busier than normal when the attack took place on Thursday evening as people prepared for the Islamic festival of Eid-al-Fitr, marking the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. Many Muslims shop for food or new clothes to celebrate the holiday.

Boko Haram has been fighting to impose Islamic law in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, for six years in a campaign of violence that has left thousands dead. Attacks have intensified since President Muhammadu Buhari took office in May. Buhari, who won elections after campaigning on a pledge promise to crush the militant group, replaced the country’s top military officers this week.

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