At least five suicide bombers on Saturday targeted a village in Chad that is home to thousands of Nigerians who have fled Islamic extremist violence, killing at least 36 people and wounding about 50 others in what appeared to be coordinated attacks, officials say. Authorities blamed Boko Haram from neighboring Nigeria for staging the attacks in the western village of Baga Sola, according to a government spokesperson. The government identified the suicide bombers as two women, two children, and a man. Female suicide bombers hit the market in Baga Sola when it was at its busiest Saturday, killing at least 16 people, one general says. He says a second group of suicide bombers killed at least 22 people at a nearby refugee camp. Those figures include some of the bombers.
There were conflicting reports on the number of wounded. The government's official count was 48, while UNICEF said at least 53 people were wounded, including 14 children. A police spokesperson says the attackers staged five bombings, adding that two were near the refugee camp but not in it. It was not immediately possible to independently verify the differing claims due to the extremely remote location of the attacks. For months, Baga Sola has been home to thousands of people who fled deadly Boko Haram attacks in Nigeria. While Boko Haram has attacked Chad's capital before, the bombings on Saturday appear to be the largest and most elaborately staged yet in the country's lake region. Chad has become a major military ally of Nigeria in the fight against Boko Haram, which earlier this year threatened to retaliate. (Read more Boko Haram stories.)