President Mohammadu Buhari. Image Credit: AFP

An attack on villagers leaving a funeral in Nigeria over the weekend left at least 65 people dead, the local news media reported, as an official blamed the violence on the militant group Boko Haram.

The official, Mohammad Bulama, said on Sunday that the attack had occurred around midday Saturday and that 10 people were being treated for injuries, the Nigerian television station TVC News reported.

Bulama, the council chairman of the Nganzai local government area in the northeastern state of Borno, said the attack was in reprisal for a clash in early July, in which local villagers and civilian self-defence forces killed 11 fighters while battling off a Boko Haram ambush.

President Mohammadu Buhari of Nigeria condemned the attack and directed the military to hunt down the perpetrators, The Associated Press reported on Sunday. The AP also quoted the secretary of a local self-defence group as saying that the attackers had opened fire on the mourners after roaring up on motorbikes.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which came just more than a month after at least 30 people were killed in a triple suicide bombing in Borno that bore the hallmarks of a Boko Haram operation.

Last week was the 10-year anniversary of the start of the insurgency by Boko Haram, an Islamist extremist group that is responsible for many civilian massacres and the abduction of hundreds of women and girls.

Borno is the region of Nigeria where the group is most active. The area has a rich agricultural history but has experienced famine-like conditions in recent years as Boko Haram militants have chased away farmers and stolen their livestock.

A rival militant group, Daesh in West Africa, has also carried out attacks in the area.