Bloomberg News

Nigeria Police Say Islamic Sect Bombed Northeast City

June 27, 2011

(Updates with comment from police spokesman in third paragraph.)

June 27 (Bloomberg) -- Police authorities in Nigeria, Africa’s biggest oil producer, said a militant Islamic sect carried out three bomb attacks on bars in the northeastern city of Maiduguri yesterday that killed at least 25 people.

“No doubt, it is the work of Boko Haram,” Lawal Abdullahi, the police spokesman in the city, said by phone today, referring to the sect that draws inspiration from Afghanistan’s Taliban movement. In a separate incident, gunmen shot dead two people in the city on June 25, including a Muslim cleric, Abdullahi said.

Authorities in northern Nigeria have blamed the group for a spate of bomb attacks and killings targeting government officials and the security forces since last year. The group claimed responsibility for a blast on June 16 at Nigeria’s police headquarters in the capital, Abuja, which killed at least five people and injured 11.

Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation with more than 140 million people, is roughly split between a mainly Muslim north and a predominantly Christian south. More than 14,000 people died in ethnic and religious clashes in the West African nation between 1999 and 2009, according to the Brussels-based International Crisis Group.

--With assistance from Elisha Bala-Gbogbo in Abuja. Editors: Gordon Bell, Philip Sanders

To contact the reporter on this story: Ardo Hazzad in Bauchi at ahazzad@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dulue Mbachu at dmbachu@bloomberg.net


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