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It’s Not Just Paris: From Nigeria to Egypt, 10 of 2015’s Worst Terrorist Attacks

A look at some of 2015's deadliest terrorist attacks.

Iraqi men search through the rubble of buildings in the aftermath of a massive suicide car bomb attack carried out by the Islamic State group in the predominantly Shiite town of Khan Bani Saad, 20 km north of Baghdad, on July 18, 2015. The suicide attack by the IS group was one of the deadliest since it took over swathes of Iraq last year and came as the country marked Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim feast that ends the fasting month of Ramadan. AFP PHOTO / AHMAD AL-RUBAYE        (Photo credit should read AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images)
Iraqi men search through the rubble of buildings in the aftermath of a massive suicide car bomb attack carried out by the Islamic State group in the predominantly Shiite town of Khan Bani Saad, 20 km north of Baghdad, on July 18, 2015. The suicide attack by the IS group was one of the deadliest since it took over swathes of Iraq last year and came as the country marked Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim feast that ends the fasting month of Ramadan. AFP PHOTO / AHMAD AL-RUBAYE (Photo credit should read AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images)

Last Friday, Islamic State terrorists carried out a series of coordinated attacks in Paris that killed at least 130 people, causing a global outpouring of outrage and sympathy. The strikes highlighted a disturbing and dramatic increase in the number of large-scale terrorist attacks — and raised uncomfortable questions about why some deaths receive so little attention from Western media.

A report released on Monday from the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), a research center based at the University of Maryland, said the number of strikes killing more than 100 civilians averaged about 4.2 per year between 1978 and 2013. In 2014, that figure skyrocketed more than 500 percent, to 26. In the first half of 2015, START counted 11 more. The majority of the attacks have taken place in Africa and the Middle East.

Below, a list of 10 of the deadliest terrorist attacks of 2015 from around the world:

Date: Jan. 3
Death Toll: Reports range from 150 to 2,000.
Perpetrator: Boko Haram
Location: Baga, Nigeria

Date: March 20
Death Toll: 137
Perpetrator: Islamic State
Location: Yemen

Date: April 2
Death Toll: At least 147
Perpetrator: Al-Shabab
Location: Kenya

Date: Feb. 4 – 5
Death Toll: At least 91
Perpetrator: Boko Haram
Location: Cameroon

Date: June 25
Death Toll: At least 154
Perpetrator: Islamic State
Location: Syria

Date: June 30 and July 1
Death Toll: At least 145
Perpetrator: Boko Haram
Location: Nigeria

Date: July 17
Death Toll: 120
Perpetrator: Islamic State
Location: Iraq

Date: Aug. 13
Death Toll: At least 76
Perpetrator: Islamic State
Location: Iraq

Date: Sept. 20
Death Toll: At least 80
Perpetrator: Likely Boko Haram
Location: Nigeria

Date: Oct. 31
Death Toll: 224
Perpetrator: Islamic State
Location: Egypt

Photo credit: AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images

Correction, Nov. 16, 2015: The Boko Haram attacks in Cameroon occurred on Feb. 4 and Feb. 5. A previous version of this article said that the events occurred on April 29 and April 30.

Megan Alpert is a fellow at Foreign Policy. Her previous bylines have included The Guardian, Guernica Daily, and Earth Island Journal. @megan_alpert

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