By Salma Abdalla
At least 32 people have been killed and 80 injured in a blast in the Nigerian city of Yola, while Tunisian authorities said they foiled a new attack on Sousse beach resort, less than five months after the attacks that claimed 38 lives.
A night-time attack took place at a fruit and vegetable market in north-eastern Nigeria. Authorities are yet to identify the source of the attack, whether it was from a suicide bomber or from an explosive device.
No one claimed responsibility for the attack as yet. Boko Haram militant group, however, is suspected of being responsible for the attack. The Islamic militant group has killed thousands over the past six years in an attempt to establish an Islamic caliphate.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari visited Yola on Saturday to decorate soldiers for their fight against Boko Haram. He declared that the Islamist militant group “are very close to defeat”.
On Tuesday, Buhari extended condolences to the families of the victims, saying on his office’s Twitter account: “The enemies of humanity will never win. Hand in hand, we will rid our land of terrorism.”
Tuesday’s bombing ended a three-week hiatus in bombings after a series of suicide attacks. It came less than a month after twin bomb blasts on mosques in two north-eastern cities that killed 42 people and injured more than 100.
In Tunisia, police foiled a “major attack” in the resort of Sousse, according to the Tunisian interior ministry. Police raided a terrorist cell as they were preparing attacks against vital installations.
Officials said 17 extremists, believed to have been trained in Syria and Libya, were arrested this week. The militants were awaiting orders to carry out assaults on politicians, beaches and landmark buildings this November.
Police forces seized weapons during the arrests, including Kalashnikov rifles, explosives and a bomb belt.
“Islamic State” had claimed responsibility for two major attacks in Tunisia this year. In March, gunmen attacked the Bardo Museum in Tunis, claiming the lives of 23 people. Sousse was the site of the second attacks as 38 foreigners were killed in a mass shooting by armed gunmen at a beach resort in June.