KANO, Nigeria: Seventeen people have been killed in suspected militant attacks in northern Nigeria, where a more than decade-long insurgency has claimed tens of thousands of lives, sources said on Thursday.
Around two dozen fighters dressed in military-like uniform and believed to be from the ISWAP group sneaked on foot into Geidam town in Yobe state late on Wednesday, militia sources said.
They rounded up nine people in a pub in and slaughtered them, some with their hands tied behind their back, militiaman Gremah Bukar said.
"They killed nine people at the pub, including two women and a retired police officer," he said.
The militants also forced their way into the staff living quarters of a technical college, killing two people and torching buildings, said Bukar, in an account supported by another militiaman, Abubakar Adamu.
Residents who saw the attackers mistook them for troops from a base in the town, said resident Babagana Kyari.
Ari Sanda, another resident, said the militants came through the eastern part of the town which had been left unguarded and people who saw them leave thought they were bona-fide troops.
Both residents gave the same death toll.
Geidam, close to the Niger border, has been repeatedly raided by the militants, including the military base where they killed troops and carted away weapons.
Separately, ISWAP claimed responsibility for a deadly attack on a pub in Taraba state -- an area in northern Nigeria outside their typical zone of operations.
Police said three people died and 19 were injured on Tuesday when an explosive device went off at a bar.
State policeman Usman Abdullahi said on Thursday that three of the injured had died, bringing the death toll to six.
In a statement released in Arabic on Wednesday, the militant group said it had detonated the bomb, "killing and wounding nearly 30 Christians and damaging the pub." - AFP