Dozens killed in Nigeria mosque attack

Dozens have been killed in a gun and bomb attack during Friday prayers at one of the biggest mosques in the Nigerian city of Kano, reports say. Many more people have been hurt, with one rescue official putting casualty figures at just under 200.

The Central Mosque is where the influential Muslim leader, the Emir of Kano, usually leads prayers.

The emir recently called for people to arm themselves against Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

The group has been waging an insurgency in Nigeria since 2009 and has killed more than 2,000 people this year, rights groups say.

The rescue official, speaking to Agence France-Presse, put the casualty toll at 64 dead and 126 hurt, although this has not been independently confirmed.

One worshipper, Aminu Abdullahi, told the agency: “Two bombs exploded, one after the other, in the premises of the mosque seconds after the prayers had started.”

He said the third blast was on a nearby road.

The attackers also turned gunfire on worshippers.

One local reporter, Chijjani Usman, told Reuters he was “face to face with people screaming”.

BBC Hausa editor Mansur Liman said one witness at a local hospital had described the scenes there as being the most horrible he had ever seen.

Credit: BBC