Boko Haram pledged allegiance to the Islamic State and changed its name to the Islamic State in West Africa last year. It targeted this mosque most likely because it did not accept the authority of the Islamic State, and thus opened itself to charges of heresy and apostasy.
“Mosque bombing in Nigeria kills 22,” IANS, March 16, 2016:
Abuja, March 16 (IANS) At least 22 people were confirmed dead after two suicide attacks on Wednesday targeted a mosque in Umarari village of Nigeria’s northeastern state of Borno, a spokesman of the Nigerian army said.
In a statement, Col. Sani Usman said one of the attacks took place inside the local mosque, while the second blast occurred a few minutes later, about 50 metres away, Xinhua reported.
Two female suicide bombers perpetrated the attacks, he added.
Earlier, local authorities who confirmed the incident said 21 people sustained various degrees of injury in the attack….
One of the suicide bombers sneaked into the mosque during early morning prayer, according to Alhaji Dambatta, leader of the civilian joint task force, who coordinated rescue operation after the incident.
Terror group Boko Haram was suspected to be responsible for the attacks. The group, which has spread its tentacles to Cameroon, Chad and Niger, has kidnapped thousands of people and killed more since 2009.
Early this year, the Nigerian government said it has “technically defeated” Boko Haram, but the unrelenting group has continued to carry out more attacks.