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Bombings in Maiduguri Kill Dozens; Officials Blame Boko Haram

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria — At least 54 people were killed and 90 wounded in a multiple bomb attack in the northeastern Nigerian city of Maiduguri in Borno state on Sunday evening, a police spokesman said on Monday.

The city had been free of attack for about a month. It was last hit by a bomb at the end of July and there was a skirmish with suspected Boko Haram militants on the outskirts in mid-August.

"A suspected Boko Haram suicide bomber detonated IEDs (improvised explosive devices) at a mosque in Ajilari and some insurgents also threw IEDs at a viewing center. Total casualty figure is now 54," Victor Isuku, a police spokesman in Maiduguri, said.

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A Nigerian army spokesman said on Sunday that three bombs had gone off.

There was still no claim for the attack but it bore the hallmarks of Islamist jihadi group Boko Haram. Boko Haram has been trying to carve out a state in the country's northeast since 2009.

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Maiduguri is the birthplace of the insurgency that has killed thousands and displaced 2.1 million people.

After President Muhammadu Buhari's inauguration, attacks rose across northern Nigeria and Maiduguri was hit on a near weekly basis.

A new offensive launched by the Nigerian army to clear Boko Haram out of some more towns over the last month saw a sharp drop in the frequency of attacks in Borno, the worst affected by the insurrection, and neighboring states.