Sunday, June 24, 2018

Nigerian extremists strike villages, 48 dead

JOS, Nigeria — Islamic militants killed 48 villagers in northeastern Nigeria near the town where they kidnapped nearly 300 schoolgirls.

The developments came hours after twin car bombings claimed at least 130 lives in this central city — an escalating campaign of violence blamed on the Boko Haram terrorist network and its drive to impose an Islamic state on Nigeria.

The three villages attacked overnight Tuesday and early Wednesday are near the town of Chibok, where the girls were abducted from their boarding school in a brazen April 15 assault that has ignited a global movement to secure their freedom.

First lady Michelle Obama is among those who have joined a viral social media campaign under the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls, tweeting this month, "Our prayers are with the missing Nigerian girls and their families. It's time to #BringBackOurGirls."

The government of Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has come under intense national and international criticism for its lack of progress in rescuing the 276 schoolgirls. Besides the United States, Britain, Israel and several other nations have offered assistance in the hunt for the girls, amid fears they would be sold into slavery, married off to fighters or worse, following repeated threats by Boko Haram's leader.

The insurgents have demanded the release of detained Boko Haram fighters in exchange for the girls — a swap officials say the government will not consider.

Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is sinful," has targeted schools, as well as churches, mosques, marketplaces, bus terminals and other spots where large numbers of civilians gather in its violent 5-year campaign to impose Islamic law on Nigeria, a nation of 170 million people. The country is half Muslim and half Christian.

During the latest attack on three northeastern villages, terrified residents said they hid in the bush and watched while Boko Haram fighters set their thatched-roof mud homes ablaze.

"We saw our village go up in flames as we hid in the bush waiting for the dawn. We lost everything," Apagu Maidaga of the village of Alagarno told the Associated Press by telephone. The nearby villages of Bulakurbe and Shawa also were attacked.

In Jos, site of two powerful car bombings Tuesday in a crowded bus terminal and market, rescue workers with body bags combed the rubble for more bodies as scores of residents gathered at mortuaries and hospitals in the search for missing loved ones.

Officials reported an additional 12 deaths from the blasts: Seven mutiliated bodies were recovered from the scene and five of the wounded died in the hospital.

Most victims were women and children who worked in the market as vendors, said Mohammed Abdulsalam of the National Emergency Management Agency. "We expect to find more bodies in the rubble," he said.

Comments
Rodney Page’s takeaways from Sunday’s Rays-Yankees game

Rodney Page’s takeaways from Sunday’s Rays-Yankees game

The catwalks at Tropicana Field are arguably the worst feature, but they  came in handy for the Rays on Sunday. Yankees pinch-hitter Clint Frazier hit what looked to be a ninth-inning home run that would've given them a one-run lead. Instea...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays beat Yankees in 12 innings on Jake Bauers homer

Rays beat Yankees in 12 innings on Jake Bauers homer

ST. PETERSBURG — Rays first baseman Jake Bauers sat at his locker after Sunday afternoon's 7-6, 12-inning win over the Yankees and thumbed through his text messages. There was no way he could get through them all. That's what happens when ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays journal: Yarbrough comes through, Venters to DL, support for Ramos

Rays journal: Yarbrough comes through, Venters to DL, support for Ramos

ST. PETERSBURG — Ryan Yarbrough was only supposed to throw on Sunday if it was an emergency. In the 12th inning with the score tied 6-6 and a runner on first, there was an emergency.Jonny Venters tweaked his right hamstring trying to cover firs...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Hit-and-run driver plows into New Tampa family on bike ride

Hit-and-run driver plows into New Tampa family on bike ride

A Tampa man suffered life-threatening injuries and his 3-year-old son is in serious condition after being struck by a hit-and-run driver as they went on a family bike ride Sunday afternoon."This is a family in a very tough situation," Tampa police Ch...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Democrat who wins Hawaii primary likely to take House seat

Democrat who wins Hawaii primary likely to take House seat

Half a dozen high-profile Democrats are vying for a congressional seat to represent Hawaii in a game of political musical chairs
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays season turning into good one

Rays season turning into good one

ST. PETERSBURG — The Tampa Bay Rays are not the best team in baseball. They are not going to win the World Series this year. Heck, they probably won't even make the playoffs.But I tell you what. This team is a heck of a lot of fun to watch.And ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Erdogan proclaimed winner of Turkey's presidential election

Erdogan proclaimed winner of Turkey's presidential election

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won Turkey's landmark election Sunday, the country's electoral commission said, ushering in a new system granting the president sweeping new powers which critics say will cement what they call a one-man rule
Updated: 1 hour ago
Erdogan proclaimed winner of Turkey's presidential election

Erdogan proclaimed winner of Turkey's presidential election

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won Turkey's landmark election Sunday, the country's electoral commission said, ushering in a new system granting the president sweeping new powers which critics say will cement what they call a one-man rule
Updated: 1 hour ago

AP Top News at 8:44 p.m. EDT

AP Top News at 8:44 p.m. EDT
Updated: 1 hour ago
Dodgers hit 7 homers in 8-7 win over Mets

Dodgers hit 7 homers in 8-7 win over Mets

Sunday's Baseball Capsules
Updated: 2 hours ago