MAIDUGURI, Nigeria - At least seven worshipers were killed and eight others injured on Monday in a suspected suicide bombing at a mosque in northeastern Nigeria, officials and eyewitnesses said.
The attack took place in Konduga, a restive town near Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State and heartland of the Boko Haram insurgency.
"A male suicide bomber detonated IEDs in Konduga during early morning prayers in a mosque around the Ajari Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State,” Bashir Garga, regional coordinator for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), said in a statement.
Garga said the injured have been evacuated to Maiduguri for medical treatment as security officials restored normalcy to the area.
"The bomber entered the mosque at about 5 a.m. [0400GMT] and detonated the bomb tied to his body while worshipers were offering their prayers. I joined others to evacuate seven bodies from the mosque. Eight people were also injured," Sheriff Moh'd, a resident, told Anadolu Agency.
Eyewitness Abba Sunoma said after the blast, he saw seven mangled bodies of worshipers brought out of the mosque's rubble.
He said he was a few meters away from the mosque when the explosion occurred.
No group has claimed responsibility for the blast but suspicion immediately fell on Boko Haram militants -- especially the Abubakar Shekau faction -- who have a history of attacking civilian populations.
The blast was the first in three months, after a suicide bombing killed five local security personnel guiding a camp for displaced victims of Boko Haram in the town.
(c) 2018 Anadolu Agency