Sun Feb 10, 2013(AP)
Three foreign doctors have been killed
in Nigeria, one of them beheaded,officials have said. Their nationality remains unclear, with differing reports claiming they were either South Korean or Chinese. The deaths on Saturday night of the physicians in Potiskum, a town in Yobe state, comes less than a week after
gunmen killed at least nine women
administering polio vaccines in Kano,
the major city of Nigeria’s predominantly Muslim north.
The two attacks raise questions over
whether the radical Islamic sect known
as Boko Haram, targeted by Nigeria’s
police and military, has picked newer,
softer targets in its guerrilla campaign
of shootings and bombings across the country. The attackers reportedly targeted the doctors inside their home, an official at General Hospital in Potiskum, a government-run health facility. The doctors had no security guards at their residence and typically travelled around the city via three-wheel taxis without a police escort, said the official who insisted on anonymity.
By the time soldiers arrived at the house, they found the doctors’ wives
cowering in a flower bed outside their
home, the official said. At the property,
they found the corpses of the three men, all bearing what appeared to be machete wounds. Two of the men had their throats slit, while the third was decapitated. The state’s police commissioner, Sunusi Rufai, confirmed the attack took place but added that no one had claimed responsibility.
Boko Haram, whose name means
“western education is sacrilege”, has
been attacking government buildings
and security forces over the last year-
and-a-half. In 2012, the group was
blamed for killing at least 792 people, according to a count by AP, although
more police officers and soldiers were
sent to the north by the Nigerian
The sect, which typically speaks to
journalists in telephone conference calls at times of its choosing, could not be immediately reached for comment on Sunday.