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The attack occurred as many students of an agricultural college slept. As many as 50 people may be dead as a result of violence that is being blamed on the group Boko Haram.

Militants Kill Students In Dorms At Nigerian College

By Bill Chappell NPR

As many as 50 students may be dead in Nigeria, after gunmen attacked an agricultural college’s dormitories in the country’s northeast. The attack, which occurred as many students slept, is being blamed on the group Boko Haram, which wants to form an Islamic state.

From The Associated Press:

“As many as 50 students may have been killed in the assault that began at about 1 a.m. Sunday in rural Gujba, Provost Molima Idi Mato of Yobe State College of Agriculture, told The Associated Press.”

” ‘They attacked our students while they were sleeping in their hostels, they opened fire at them,’ he said.

“He said he could not give an exact death toll as security forces still are recovering bodies of students mostly aged between 18 and 22.”

The school’s surviving students have fled, a witness tells the AP.

The Boko Haram group often targets schools — its name is translated as “Western education is forbidden.” A government push against the group met with some success earlier this year, but in the months since, the group has carried out violent attacks in response.

A state of emergency that was declared in May persists in northeastern Nigeria.

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