Extremists claim responsibility for Nigerian prison attack

Jul 6, 2022, 4:22 PM | Updated: Jul 7, 2022, 4:23 am
A burnt out bus is seen outside the Kuje maximum prison following a rebel attack in Kuje, Nigeria, ...

A burnt out bus is seen outside the Kuje maximum prison following a rebel attack in Kuje, Nigeria, Wednesday, July 6, 2022. At least 600 inmates escaped in a jailbreak in Nigeria's capital city, officials said Wednesday, blaming the attack on Islamic extremist rebels. About 300 have been recaptured, authorities said. (AP Photo/Chinedu Asadu)

(AP Photo/Chinedu Asadu)

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for an attack on a prison in Nigeria’s capital which freed nearly 900 inmates including 60 of its members.

Nigerian security forces on Thursday continued to search for at least 400 escaped prisoners who are still at large.

While Nigeria has suffered multiple jailbreaks in recent years, the attack on Tuesday night was the first in the nation’s capital within that period — a development that analysts say points to a “failure of intelligence.”

The Islamic State West Africa Province said in a statement that the attack on the Kuje prison was carried out in 50 minutes by three groups: One attacked the prison’s gate, another stormed the prison and the third blocked the road leading to the facility.

The group said the attack is part of the Islamic State group’s campaign to free its members from prisons.

Authorities said the extremist rebels were “very determined” and launched the daring attack on the Kuje prison with “very high-grade explosives.” They killed one prison guard and freed 879 inmates including 64 of their members whom authorities believe they had “specifically” come to rescue.

People living near the prison told The Associated Press how the neighborhood was rocked by gunfire and explosions late Tuesday night.

A worker at a nearby bakery said the explosion “shook the bakery.” The attackers “were shooting and shooting and shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ (God is greatest),” said the bakery worker who insisted on anonymity for his safety.

“More than one hour after, I saw many people leaving (the prison) and I even thought it was people that went to enjoy themselves at the bar here,” he said of the casual way the escapees walked through the streets.

Emmanuel Johny, who lives near the prison, said at the first explosion, “I knew this was a bomb and not a gun.”

The Islamic State West Africa Province is an offshoot of Nigeria’s Boko Haram group which has waged an extremist insurgency against the Nigerian government for more than a decade.

Since the death of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau in mid-2021, the IS-linked splinter group has sought to strengthen its position in northeast Nigeria and the surrounding Lake Chad basin, though both extremist groups remain united in their fight against the Nigerian government. Their extremist rebellion has caused more than 35,000 deaths in northeastern Nigeria and displaced an estimated 2 million people, according to the U.N.

Their jihadi insurgency has expanded to the neighboring countries of Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

The attack on the prison in Nigeria’s capital city shows the severity of insurgency, according to experts.

“For Abuja to be having this kind of attack, it tells you how much our security intelligence has failed,” said Confidence MacHarry with the Lagos-based SBM Intelligence security firm. The attack was “long-planned,” he said.

Nigeria’s security forces “could get all the manpower and everything but can’t prevent attacks before it happens,” MacHarry said.

___

Youssef contributed to this report from Cairo, Egypt.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - This handout photo taken from video and released by Russian Defense Ministry Press Service o...
Associated Press

Russia accused of ‘kidnapping’ head of Ukraine nuclear plant

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian forces blindfolded and detained the head of Europe’s largest nuclear plant, Ukraine’s nuclear power provider said Saturday, reigniting long-simmering fears over the plant’s security. The alleged kidnapping on Friday apparently took place shortly after Russian President Vladimir Putin escalated his war in Ukraine and pushed it into a new, dangerous […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Indonesian police say 4 dead, 1 missing in Papua attack

JAYAPURA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesian security forces on Saturday recovered the bodies of four construction workers who were killed in a separatist attack in the restive province of West Papua, police said. The four men were killed late Thursday when gunmen stormed a government road construction project in remote Meyarga village in Bintuni Bay district, […]
1 day ago
FILE - Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is welcomed to the stage by Maine Gov. Paul L...
Associated Press

Shying from Trump, ex-Maine Gov. Paul LePage seeks job back

YARMOUTH, Maine (AP) — When then-Maine Gov. Paul LePage endorsed Donald Trump in 2016, he credited himself as a prototype for the insurgent presidential candidate. “I was Donald Trump before Donald Trump became popular, so I think I should support him since we are one of the same cloth,” said LePage, whose two terms in […]
1 day ago
A member of the Zion Ahmadiyya Muslim community attends Friday prayer in Zion, Ill., on Friday, Sep...
Associated Press

Two prophets, century-old prayer duel inspire Zion mosque

A holy miracle happened in Zion 115 years ago. Or so millions of Ahmadi Muslims around the world believe. The Ahmadis view this small-sized city, 40 miles north of Chicago on the shores of Lake Michigan, as a place of special religious significance for their global messianic faith. Their reverence for the community began more […]
1 day ago
A member of the Zion Ahmadiyya Muslim community attends Friday prayer in Zion, Ill., on Friday, Sep...
Associated Press

Two prophets, century-old prayer duel inspire Zion mosque

ZION, Illinois (AP) — A holy miracle happened in Zion 115 years ago. Or so millions of Ahmadi Muslims around the world believe. The Ahmadis view this small-sized city, 40 miles north of Chicago on the shores of Lake Michigan, as a place of special religious significance for their global messianic faith. Their reverence for […]
1 day ago
FILE - Stewart Rhodes, founder of the Oath Keepers, speaks during a rally outside the White House i...
Associated Press

Trump at center of Oath Keepers novel defense in Jan. 6 case

WASHINGTON (AP) — The defense team in the Capitol riot trial of the Oath Keepers leader is relying on an unusual strategy with Donald Trump at the center. Lawyers for Stewart Rhodes, founder of the extremist group, are poised to argue that jurors cannot find him guilty of seditious conspiracy because all the actions he […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Extremists claim responsibility for Nigerian prison attack