Nigerian suicide bombings: Teenage girl sent by Boko Haram rips off suicide vest and refuses to bomb refugee camp

'She said she was scared because she knew she would kill people'

A teenage girl sent by extremist group Boko Haram to blow up a refugee camp tore off her explosive vest and fled as soon as she was out of sight of her handlers. 

Her two companions blew themselves up in the Dikwa refugee camp in northeast Nigeria, killing at least 58 people.

The girl who refused to kill herself and others was later found by local security forces. She is now in custody and has given officials information about other planned bombings, helping them to increase security at the camp. 

"She said she was scared because she knew she would kill people," Modu Awami, a self-defence fighter who helped question the girl, said.

"But she was also frightened of going against the instructions of the men who brought her to the camp."

The girl was among thousands held captive for months by the extremists, according to Algoni Lawan, a spokesman for the Ngala local government area.

“She confessed to our security operatives that she was worried if she went ahead and carried out the attack that she might kill her own father, who she knew was in the camp," he said.

The girl tried to persuade her companions to abandon the mission, he added, "but she said she could not convince the two others to change their minds".

Her story was corroborated when she led soldiers to the unexploded vest. 

Boko Haram's six-year insurgency has killed around 20,000 people and made around 2.5 million homeless. 

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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