Coordinated sect attack kills 178 in Nigeria
KANO, NigeriaBomb attacks targeting security forces and gun battles killed at least 178 people in Nigeria’s second-largest city of Kano, where bodies littered the streets Jan. 21, sources said.
Jan. 20’s attacks hit police stations, immigration offices and the local headquarters of Nigeria’s secret police in Kano, the Associated Press reported, a city of more than 9 million people that remains an important political and religious center in the country’s Muslim north. After the attacks a curfew was imposed on the city. The main newspaper in the north said a purported spokesman for Islamist group Boko Haram had claimed responsibility for the violence, saying it was in response to authorities’ refusal to release its members from custody. Scores of such attacks in Nigeria’s north have been blamed on Boko Haram, though Jan. 20’s would be among the group’s most audacious and well-coordinated assaults.
Some 20 huge blasts could be heard in the city as a suicide bomber struck a regional police office and a car bomb rocked state police headquarters after the attacker fled and was shot dead, Agence France-Presse quoted police sources as saying. The attacks in Kano sent residents fleeing in fear of what would come next. Britain, Germany and France denounced the attacks. Meanwhile, explosions struck two churches in the northern Nigerian city of Bauchi yesterday, witnesses said, destroying one of them completely, although there were no immediate reports of casualties.