ABUJA (AFP) – Unidentified gunmen opened fire on Christian mourners on Friday, killing 17 in the latest attack after the expiry of an ultimatum from Islamist group Boko Haram for Christians to leave the majority Muslim north.
Following are the main attacks linked to the group:
– July 26, 2009: Boko Haram launches a short-lived uprising in parts of the north that is brutally crushed by the military. The military assault leaves more than 800 people dead, mostly sect members. Boko Haram leader Mohammed Yusuf is captured but later killed when police said he was trying to escape. A mosque in the capital of Borno State that served as sect headquarters is destroyed.
– December 24 and 27, 2010: A series of attacks claimed by Boko Haram and reprisals in the central city of Jos and Maiduguri in the northeast of the country kill at least 86.
– December 29: Islamists suspected of belonging to the sect kill eight people in Maiduguri.
– June 7, 2011: Attacks on a church and two police posts at Maiduguri, blamed on the sect, leave at least 14 dead.
– June 16: The sect targets the national police headquarters in Abuja, killing two.
– June 26: The sect’s gun and bomb attack on a beer garden in Maiduguri leaves at least 25 dead and dozens injured.
-July 3: Around 20 are killed in the northeast in violence blamed on the group.
– August 26: Boko Haram claims responsibility for a suicide bomb blast that rocks the UN compound in Abuja, killing at least 24 people. It is the first time it targets the international community.
– November 4: A series of attacks on police targets and churches in the northeastern city of Damaturu claimed by the sect kills at least 150 people.
– December 22-23: A series of attacks in the cities of Damaturu, Potiskum and Maiduguri claimed by the group along with a heavy military crackdown leave up to 100 people killed.
– December 25: A series of attacks claimed by the group targeting churches during Christmas services as well as police targets leave at least 49 people dead.
– December 31: President Goodluck Jonathan declares a state of emergency in areas hard hit by the violence and orders the closure of part of the country’s borders. He brands Boko Haram a “cancerous” body that was bent on destroying the country.
– January 1, 2012: Boko Haram issues an ultimatum to Christians in the country’s north to leave within three days and threatens government troops in the areas where a state of emergency has been declared.
– January 4: Three bomb blasts hit the northern Nigerian cities of Maiduguri and Damaturu.
– January 5: Gunmen open fire on worshippers at a Nigerian church, killing six in an attack on the outskirts of the northeastern city of Gombe. The attack has not been claimed.
– January 6: Gunmen fired on Christian mourners in the northeastern town of Mubi, killing 17 people. It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack.