My Parents Took Me To Boko Haram – 14-year-old Kano Suicide Bomber

The girl, who was identified as Zahra’u
Babangida, was arrested in Kano on December 10
following a double suicide bombing in a market
that killed 10 people.
She was presented to journalists by police and
instructed to recount how Islamist militants
allegedly forced her to take part in the attack.
She said her mother and father, both Boko Haram
sympathisers, took her to an insurgent hideout in
a forest near the town of Gidan Zana in Kano
She said one alleged militant leader asked her
whether she knew what a suicide bombing was.
“They said, ‘Can you do it?’ I said no.
“They said, ‘You will go to heaven if you do it.’ I
said ‘No I can’t.’ They said they would shoot me
or throw me into a dungeon,” Zahra’u told
There was no way to independently verify her
story and she had no lawyer present. No
information was available concerning the
whereabouts of her parents.
Police said they had instructed the girl to tell her
story to boost public awareness about those
responsible for the December 10 attack.
Faced with the threat of death, Zahra’u said she
finally agreed to take part in the attack but
“never had any intention of doing it.”
Several days later, Zahra’u said, she and three
other girls, all wearing explosives, were brought
to the Kantin Kwari market by unidentified men.
Zahra’u said she was injured when one of the girls
detonated her bomb and then she fled the scene,
ending up at a hospital on the outskirts of Kano
where she was discovered to be carrying
Boko Haram has increasingly used female suicide
bombers, including teenagers, as part of their
five-year insurgency.
Kano, the largest city in the mainly Muslim north,
saw four such attacks in one week in July, while
similar bombings have hit the states of Bauchi
and Niger.
Experts say the group has used girls as bombers
to demonstrate the range of tactics they have
available to sow fear across Nigeria.
If confirmed, Zahra’u’s story would be the first
known case of parents volunteering their
daughter to take part in a deadly attack.
Violence in northern Nigeria has intensified in
recent months, raising security fears ahead of
February 14 elections.

1 thought on “My Parents Took Me To Boko Haram – 14-year-old Kano Suicide Bomber

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