Imam Baba Moussa of Cameroon’s Ngaoundere Mosque said such practices are not part of Islam, and warned parents about Boko Haram fighters who may be recruiting children.
The explosion hit the town of Sabon Gari in Borno state, which is the heartland of the Islamist militant group.
A nurse at Biu hospital 25 miles away said the facility received more than 20 bodies burned beyond recognition, and is treating 41 survivors.
According to one eyewitness, the attack was perpetrated by Boko Haram, although on Tuesday evening nobody had claimed responsibility.
The explosive device “was hidden in a bag used to disperse herbicides”. It was smuggled into the market and apparently abandoned…
It is not the first time negotiations between Boko Haram and Nigeria have been mooted.
It is not clear whether the explosion was caused by a suicide bomber or by a planted device.
“I have not heard of any individual called Mahamat Daoud”, said Jonathan Hill, of the Defence Studies Department at London’s King’s College, who closely monitors Boko Haram.
President Idriss Deby of Chad has disclosed today, August 12, that Boko Haram has picked a new leader, fuelling speculation that Abubakar Shekau may indeed be dead. Bura also expressed assurances that the Boko Haram Takfiri group has been behind the deadly attack.
Nigeria’s new President Muhammadu Buhari has said his government is open to talks, but also would pursue the military option. Boko Haram has killed thousands of people in northern Nigeria and neighbouring countries since its insurgency became violent in 2009.
The crackdown sought to prevent young Nigerians being “lured into terrorism, prostitution, slavery and other untoward activities abroad”, the NIS said in a statement.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said tribal leaders mediated the release of the 22, adding that money has been paid for the released group.