11 dead in Cameroon suicide attacks

  • 23/07/2015

Twin suicide attacks carried out by two young girls have left at least 11 people dead in northern Cameroon.

The region has been repeatedly targeted by Nigeria-based Boko Haram jihadists, officials said on Wednesday (local time).

The girls, who were under 15, attacked the central market of the regional capital Maroua as well as the adjoining Hausa neighbourhood, regional governor Midjiyawa Bakari said.

In a statement, the presidency said that 11 people had died and 32 were wounded in what it called "cowardly and despicable" acts.

A source close to local authorities earlier confirmed the attack, saying "two girls who were begging blew themselves up" at around 3:00 pm (2400 AEST).

A Cameroonian journalist, who was in the town at the time, described "total panic" in the town after the bombings.

The attack is the second of its kind in Cameroon in the past 10 days.

On July 12, two female suicide bombers blew themselves up in Fotokol, on the border with Nigeria, killing 10 civilians and a soldier from neighbouring Chad.

Over the past two years Boko Haram has carried out several cross-border raids and abductions in northern Cameroon but the country, which is engaged in a regional fightback against the jihadists, had previously been spared from suicide attacks.