At least 13 people killed in suicide bomb attack in Cameroon
At least 13 people were killed in a suicide bomb attack in predominantly-Christian Mozogo, Mayo Tsanaga department, in Far North Cameroon, after armed militants raided the community.
The attack, thought to be perpetrated by Boko Haram, took place in the early hours of Friday 8 January. According to the village chief, Mahamat Chetima Abba, the militants arrived wielding machetes and firing guns into the air.
As panicked villagers fled, a young female suicide bomber detonated her explosive device, killing men, women and children.
Midjiyawa Bakari, governor of the Far North region, reported, “Boko Haram terrorists stormed the village, firing shots in the air. Villagers fled to a park, where Boko Haram fighters brought a girl strapped with explosives.”
In a statement by UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore, it was reported that of the people killed in the attack, five were children between the ages of 3 and 14, and another six children, aged 9 to 16, were “gravely injured”.
Authorities in Cameroon had to close more than 60 schools on the northern border with Nigeria, in October 2020, to protect children and teaching staff from continuing suicide bomb attacks by Boko Haram.
In Far North Cameroon, rural Christian communities are frequently subjected to Boko Haram violence. Eyewitness accounts of attacks describe heavily armed militants encircling Christian villages, shouting throughout the night as they kill, loot and burn. Boko Haram has stated its aim is to establish an Islamic caliphate extending from its base in north-east Nigeria.