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 BUEA, Cameroon, Sept 17, 2018 (News Wires) - Armed men attacked a school in Cameroon's southwest English-speaking region, wounding more than 20 people, a government official said on Monday.

An unknown number of armed men, using machetes and homemade guns, staged the attack on Saint Joseph's College near Buea late Sunday, according to South West Region governor Bernard Okalia Bilai. No one was killed, he said.

The wounded children were rushed to hospitals and hundreds of parents started pulling their children from schools.

"It is a terrible situation. We are not safe at home, our children not safe at school," said Enanga Luisy, a mother of two students.

At least half a dozen schools in Buea have asked parents to take home their children.

Last month, armed separatists used social media to warn parents against sending their children to school. The government, however, assured the parents it had taken enough security measures to protect the schools.

Kano (Nigeria), September 13, 2018 (AFP) - Soldiers have thwarted another Boko Haram attack on an army base in northeast Nigeria, the latest in a series of offensives against military targets in the remote region.

Scores of fighters attacked the base in Damasak, in the far north of Borno state, on Wednesday evening, firing heavy artillery in an apparent bid to overrun it.

Hours of fighting ensued but the attack was repelled with the help of aerial support, military sources in the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, told AFP on Thursday.

Nigerian Army spokesman Brigadier General Texas Chukwu confirmed troops from 145 battalion were fighting the terrorists, calling the battle "fierce".

"The troops are dealing with the terrorists," he said on Wednesday evening.

Chukwu's statement was a departure from the military's repeated denials of Boko Haram attacks in recent weeks, which have seen dozens of troops killed and weapons stolen.

Last month, 48 soldiers were killed in a raid in the village of Zari, near Damasak, while last Friday, a base was sacked in the town of Gudumbali.

Gudumbali is 80 kilometres from Damasak. Thousands of civilians were forced to flee and Boko Haram temporarily seized the town before withdrawing the next day.

On Saturday, a regional fighting force set up to stop cross-border attacks helped to repel another attack on a base near Baga, on the shores of Lake Chad.

A senior military officer, who asked to remain anonymous because he is not authorised to speak to the media, said the terrorists in Wednesday's attack were heavily armed.

"The terrorists attacked the base around 6:00pm but they met stiff resistance from troops who engaged them in hours-long battle," he added.

After about four hours of fighting the militants were "beaten" and forced to withdraw after a fighter jet bombarded their positions, he said.

There was no immediate indication of casualties on either side.

The latest attacks have been blamed on the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), a Boko Haram splinter group headed by Mus'ab al-Barnawi and backed by IS.

Security analysts assess that the Barnawi faction currently poses a greater threat than that led by Abubakar Shekau, who has indiscriminately targeted civilians.

President Muhammadu Buhari was elected in 2015 on a promise to defeat Boko Haram, whose insurgency has killed more than 27,000 people in northeast Nigeria since 2009.

TIKRIT, Iraq, September 12, 2018 (News Wires) - At least six people were killed and 42 wounded when a suicide bomber detonated a car full of explosives at a restaurant on a highway near the Iraqi city of Tikrit on Wednesday, police and medical sources said.

Police said the attacker targeted the Qala’a restaurant which is usually frequented by security forces members and paramilitary fighters.

Most of the casualties were a group of Iraqi tourists traveling on board of a bus that stopped by the restaurant, police and medical source said.

No group has claimed responsibility, but Islamic State terrorists often carry out such attacks.

Iraqi security officials have said Islamic State is likely to wage an insurgency in Iraq after its self-proclaimed caliphate all but collapsed and the militants were dislodged from large areas of the west and north of the country.

The group’s fighters have since then waged a campaign of kidnappings and killings.

JALALABAD, Sept 11, 2018 (News Wires) - At least eight people were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up among protesters in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday, an official said, in the latest violence to hit the country.

Another 35 were wounded in the blast in Nangarhar province, where people had blocked a highway in protest over the appointment of a local police chief, provincial governor spokesman Ataullah Khogyani said.

Provincial health department spokesman Inamullah Miakhil gave a slightly lower toll of five dead.

“Dozens of wounded people have been brought to Jalalabad hospitals so far,” Miakhil added.

The attack came hours after a double bombing in front of a girls’ school in the provincial capital of Jalalabad killed a boy and wounded four others.

The first explosion happened in front of Malika Omaira girls’ school at around 8:30am (04:00 GMT), Khogyani told AFP earlier.

A second bomb went off as students from a neighbouring boys’ school and locals gathered at the scene, he added.

There has been no claim of responsibility for any of the attacks, but the Taliban and the Islamic State (IS) group are active in Nangarhar, which borders Pakistan.

An uptick in violence across Afghanistan in recent weeks has claimed the lives of hundreds of civilians and security forces, as the Taliban makes gains on the battlefield and IS launches deadly urban attacks.

The fighting has dampened optimism that had been tentatively growing as Afghan and international players ratchet up efforts to convince the Taliban to negotiate an end to the 17-year conflict.

 

KABUL, September 9, 2018 (News Wires) -- An Afghan official says insurgents have attacked a checkpoint in the western Herat province, killing at least nine Afghan security forces and wounding another six.

Gelani Farhad, the provincial governor's spokesman, says the attack late Saturday ignited a gunbattle in which around 10 insurgents were killed and five wounded. He says the attack was likely carried out by the Taleban, who are active in the district and frequently target security forces and government officials.

Afghan forces have struggled to combat both the Taleban since the US and NATO formally ended their combat mission in 2014.

MOGADISHU, Somalia, September 2, 2018 (Reuters) - A car bomb struck a local government office in Mogadishu in a suicide attack on Sunday, police said.

A Reuters witness said there was a huge blast and clouds of smoke could be seen in the city.

"A suicide car bomb (rammed) into the district office of Hawlwadag in Mogadishu. It is too early to know casualties," major Abdullahi Hussein, a police officer told Reuters.

Somalia has been convulsed by lawlessness and violence since 1991. Islamist group Al Shabaab is fighting to dislodge a Western-backed government protected by African Union-mandated peacekeepers.

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