Nigerian Militants Kill 18 After Opening Fire on Market Suspected of Selling ‘Forbidden’ Meat

Men offload bags of onions from a camel at a market in Sokoto, Nigeria, Saturday, March 10, 2012. (Photo: AP)

Nigerian militants killed 18 people after ruthlessly opening fire at an open air market in Damboa earlier this week where “forbidden” meat — like pork and monkey– was likely sold.

“Gunmen suspected to be members of BH (Islamist sect Boko Haram) came to the town market and shot dead 13 local hunters on the spot while five others died from their injuries at the hospital,” local Alhaji Abba Ahmed said Tuesday, according to Reuters.  “They came to the market in a Volkswagen Golf car, carried out the operation and left.”

In a separate attack in the city of Kano, suspected members of the same militant Islamist group shot five people playing a board game outside to death, wounding two others.

Boko Haram ascribes to an extreme Wahhabist form of Islam that lashes out at anyone who disagrees as infidels.  According to the BBC, they have been linked to roughly 1,400 deaths in Nigeria since 2010, often targeting churches, places where alcohol is sold, and places of entertainment.

Though the militants have demanded an Islamic state within Nigeria, President Goodluck Jonathan says eliminating them is one of his top priorities.