Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

Bold and bonkers: Kate Bush is back on stage

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Simon Serfaty, US foreign policy specialist

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'It's a War, Stupid!'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

French PM calls on ECB to go further to help economy

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'I love the Socialists'

Read more

WEB NEWS

Ukraine: Web users call for international assistance

Read more

WEB NEWS

France: Fighting political corruption with transparency

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

South Africa: Four men found guilty of shooting Rwandan exile

Read more

  • Ukrainian forces retreat from Luhansk airport after clashes

    Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Armeli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • Teddy Riner, France’s unstoppable judo champion

    Read more

  • Monaco’s Falcao set for Man Utd loan on transfer deadline day

    Read more

  • Spain orders custody for parents of ill British boy

    Read more

  • Anti-government protesters storm Pakistan's state TV

    Read more

  • Putin calls for talks on 'statehood' for east Ukraine

    Read more

  • Poland marks 75 years since German invasion of WWII

    Read more

  • Israel appropriates large tracts of West Bank land

    Read more

  • Rescue efforts under way after French apartment block blast

    Read more

  • Web doc on French self-immolation protests takes top prize

    Read more

  • PSG trounce Saint-Etienne 5-0 with Ibrahimovic hat trick

    Read more

  • Tension rises in Hong Kong as Beijing rejects open elections

    Read more

  • French police stop 'teenage jihadist' from flying to Syria

    Read more

  • Kidnapped Yazidi women 'sold to Islamists' in Syria

    Read more

  • Confusion reigns after Lesotho 'coup'

    Read more

Africa

Car bomb targets church services in central city of Jos

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-02-26

A car bomb targeted a church during Sunday services in the central Nigerian city of Jos, killing two people. It is the latest in a series of deadly attacks in recent months, most of them claimed by Islamist group Boko Haram.

REUTERS - A suicide bomber drove a car packed with explosives into a church in the Nigerian city of Jos on Sunday, killing two people and wounding 38, and Christian youths beat two Muslims to death in revenge.

A Reuters reporter at the scene of the blast saw two of the bodies, which police said included the suicide bomber, who had rammed his Volkswagen into the church before detonating the explosives.
 
Security forces cordoned off the area, while Christian youths set up a roadblock where they dragged the two Muslim men off their motorbikes and beat them to death, police said.
 
The Reuters reporter saw the bodies of the two men on the roadside in Jos, a city flanked by volcanic boulders in Nigeria’s rocky “Middle Belt”, where its largely Christian south and mostly Muslim north meet.
 
Ethnic and religious tensions run high in the city and other parts of the surrounding region, which has seen hundreds killed in bouts of intercommunal violence in the past decade.
 
“NEMA (the National Emergency Management Agency) confirms three dead in suspected suicide car explosion in Jos today, including the bomber whose body was shredded to pieces,” NEMA spokesman Yushua Shuaib said by text message.
 
“As of now 38 victims have been admitted to hospital for treatment. NEMA and the Red Cross have completed evacuation (of the church).”
 
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast, but Islamist militant group Boko Haram has targeted churches as part of its growing campaign of violence against the government.
 
“I heard a loud explosion near the church and I hit the ground. It shook buildings,” local resident Ishayaa Makut said.
 
Sectarian tension
 
Attacks on churches have raised fears the sect, styled on the Taliban whose name means “Western education is forbidden”, is trying to ignite sectarian strife in Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer.
 
Another bomb exploded near a church in the Nigerian town of Suleja, on the edge of the capital Abuja, on Sunday, wounding five people.   
 
In controlled explosions, police detonated two bombs on Sunday that had been planted at the police barracks in Gombe, a northeastern city that had been largely free of the Islamist insurgency until this weekend, Gandi Orubebe, police commissioner for Gombe, said by telephone.
 
On Friday, Gombe was shaken a series of explosions as gunmen attempted a prison break that killed 12 people.
 
Boko Haram, which wants sharia law more widely applied across the continent’s most populous nation, has become increasingly sophisticated and deadly in its methods in the past six months. It has widened its targets beyond attacks on police and other authority figures to include Christians.
 
Its fighters rarely use suicide bombers. The first proven case of such a tactic was last August, when a Boko Haram militant drove a vehicle full of explosives into the U.N.  headquarters in Abuja, killing 25 people.
 
A series of bombs struck churches in Nigeria on Christmas Day, including one which hit a Catholic Church in Madala, just outside Abuja, killing 37 people and wounding 57, and one in Jos. Boko Haram claimed the blasts.
 
The country of 160 million is split roughly evenly between Christians and Muslims, who mostly live side by side in peace.

 

Date created : 2012-02-26

  • NIGERIA

    Boko Haram has links to al Qaeda, Nigeria's military chief says

    Read more

  • NIGERIA

    Fresh attacks against police in flashpoint city of Kano

    Read more

  • NIGERIA

    Can talking to Boko Haram give peace a chance?

    Read more

COMMENT(S)