Nigeria Bomb Attacks 'Kill Dozens' In Damaturu

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A series of bomb and gun attacks in the north-eastern Nigerian town of Damaturu has killed at least 50 people, the Red Cross says.

Witnesses said the bombs hit several targets, including churches and the headquarters of the Yobe state police.

Gunfire lasted into the night and residents were said to be fleeing, our Nigeria correspondent says.

It follows attacks on security forces in the nearby city of Maiduguri blamed on the Islamist Boko Haram group.

The BBC's Jonah Fisher, in Nigeria's commercial capital, Lagos, says people visiting morgues have reported seeing 92 bodies.

An unnamed local government official in Damaturu was quoted by AFP news agency as saying that hundreds of wounded people were being treated in hospital.

The state police commissioner said the attacks caught the town by surprise and he was still trying to establish the number of casualties, our correspondent reports.

'Church torched'
Witnesses said the attacks began on Friday at about 18:30 (17:30 GMT) and lasted for about 90 minutes.

Gunmen then engaged in running battles with security forces.

A Roman Catholic parish priest told our correspondent his church had been burnt down and eight other churches also attacked.

The attacks followed a triple suicide bomb attack on a military headquarters in Maiduguri, in neighbouring Borno state.

Military officials said the three attackers had died.

That attack is believed to be the work of Boko Haram, which has launched frequent attacks on the police and government officials.

The name means "Western education is forbidden".