Islamic militants kill 44 at mosque in Nigeria

nigeria mosque shooting

Muslim men belonging to a community of cattle merchants pray outside the Kara mosque, in the Ogun State of Nigeria, on October 26, 2012. (PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/Getty Images)

By Associated Press, Updated: Monday, August 12, 3:48 PM

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria — Suspected Islamic militants wearing army fatigues gunned down 44 people praying at a mosque in northeast Nigeria, while another 12 civilians died in an apparently simultaneous attack, security agents said Monday.Sunday’s attacks were the latest in a slew of violence blamed on religious extremists in this West African oil producer, where the radical Boko Haram group, which wants to oust the government and impose Islamic law, poses the greatest security threat in years.

It was not immediately clear why the Islamic Boko Haram would have killed worshipping Muslims, but the group has in the past attacked mosques whose clerics have spoken out against religious extremism. Boko Haram also has attacked Christians outside churches and teachers and schoolchildren, as well as government and military targets.

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