Boko Haram Claims June Suicide Bombings in Chad Capital

Boko Haram militants have claimed responsibility for twin suicide bombings in Chad’s capital N’Djamena that left 38 people dead, the SITE Intelligence Group reported Wednesday.

In a statement in Arabic posted on Twitter, the jihadist group identified two suicide bombers who it said carried out the June 15 attacks, the first in the capital of a country that has taken a leading role in a regional offensive against Nigeria-based Boko Haram.

Until this terrible Monday in June, Chad had never witnessed a terror attack on its soil, despite the fact that N’Djamena is only 30 miles away from Nigeria’s Borno state, Boko Haram’s stronghold.

The bombers, who blew themselves up with explosive belts, had targeted the police academy and police headquarters in N’Djamena, the statement added. It was signed by “Islamic State, West Africa Province”, as Boko Haram has styled itself since pledging allegiance to the Islamic State group in March.

Chad bombed Boko Haram positions in Nigeria following the bombings and launched a domestic security crackdown. Authorities in the Muslim-majority country also banned women from wearing the full-face Muslim veil.

Troops from Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Cameroon have been fighting Boko Haram insurgents in northeast Nigeria for several months and have claimed a string of successes.

But a recent surge in an attacks has left analysts suggesting a decline in the intensity of operations has allowed the rebels to regroup and rearm.

The six-year insurgency has claimed at least 15 000 lives.