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Girl suicide bomber kills five in Nigeria's Yobe state capital

Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has been known to use teenage girls to trigger suicide attacks.

By Fred Lambert
A female suicide bomber is reported to have detonated Tuesday at a bus station in Damaturu, Nigeria, killing people and herself. Image from Google Maps
A female suicide bomber is reported to have detonated Tuesday at a bus station in Damaturu, Nigeria, killing people and herself. Image from Google Maps

DAMATURU, Nigeria, Aug. 25 (UPI) -- A suicide bomber described as a teenage girl detonated Tuesday at bus station in Damaturu, Nigeria, killing at least five people, according to reports.

Vanguard reports witnesses saying the bomber was between 12 and 14 years old and was veiled, carrying luggage. The explosion reportedly occurred before officers manning the station in Yobe state's capital could begin making security checks.

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The blast wounded several people, with estimates ranging between 22 and 40 with various injuries.

The attack comes a week after Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari announced plans to boost security in the nation by recruiting 10,000 additional police officers, installing CCTV monitoring systems in major towns and forming a federal anti-terrorism task force.

RELATED Suspected Boko Haram militants ambush Nigeria's new army chief in Borno state

Meanwhile, in the village of Pompomari, in Borno state to the east, a separate bomber, described by police spokesman Toyin Gbadegesin as a male, sensed he was about to be apprehended and ran into a bush before detonating, killing only himself.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attacks, but countless similar incidents have been blamed on Boko Haram, an Islamic terrorist group that has waged a campaign of mass kidnappings, group executions, suicide bombings and assaults on remote villages and military bases since 2009. The group seeks an Islamic government in Nigeria.

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Several attacks attributed to Boko Haram have featured female bombers, including on July 26, when one detonated at a market in Damaturu, killing 15 people and injuring 47. Witnesses described the woman as being mentally unstable.

RELATED Up to 150 villagers killed fleeing Boko Haram in Nigeria's Yobe state

The night prior, a suicide bomber, described by witnesses as a teenage girl, blew herself up at a bar in Maroua, Cameroon, killing 20 people and injuring dozens of others. The northern Cameroonian city is the army's headquarters for operations against Boko Haram and was the setting of a similar double suicide blast days earlier that killed up to 13 people and wounded more than 30.

Boko Haram gained international infamy when it kidnapped over 200 schoolgirls from the village of Chibok in April 2014. Experts have speculated the group might be using abducted children to conduct the continuing wave of suicide attacks.

RELATED Nigerian president announces plan to recruit 10,000 additional police officers

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