Suicide Bombers Attack Nigeria Checkpoint as Refugees Return

Four suicide bombers detonated explosives at a checkpoint in the northeastern Nigerian town of Mafa, killing themselves and one member of a vigilante group, the National Emergency Management Agency said.

Five other members of the vigilante group were injured in the attack on Monday and are undergoing treatment, Abdulkadir Ibrahim, a spokesman of the agency, said by phone from the city of Maiduguri. All the suicide bombers were women, he said.

Boko Haram Islamist militants in Nigeria have stepped up suicide attacks as the military intensified its offensive to meet a December deadline by President Muhammadu Buhari to end the six-year insurgency.

The violence has displaced at least 1.4 million people, sending refugees across the borders into Cameroon, Chad and Niger. The repatriation of about 18,600 people has begun despite continued attacks. Another 15,000 refugees will come back from Cameroon in the next few weeks, following the arrival of 1,200 this week, Nigeria’s emergency management agency said in an e-mailed statement.

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