Bomb outside Nigerian capital kills three – Red Cross


A bomb blast at a church in Suleja, a satellite town on the outskirts of Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, killed three people and seriously wounded seven yesterday, the Red Cross said.

“Three dead, seven critically injured (after) bomb explosion at Suleja, Niger State,” a Red Cross spokesman said. The police and emergency agencies said there had been an explosion but would not confirm any deaths or give details on the cause.

Witnesses said a church had been damaged in the blast and at least two dead bodies had been taken to the local hospital.

Suleja was the target of a deadly bomb attack at its electoral office on the eve of April’s parliamentary election.

Security in Nigeria’s capital has been tight in recent weeks after a bomb outside national police headquarters last month by suspected members of an Islamist sect killed several people.

Police say Boko Haram, which says it wants a wider application of sharia Islamic law across Africa’s most populous nation, has been behind almost daily attacks in northeastern Nigeria, mainly around Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state.

The strikes, which often target the police, churches and drinking spots, have killed more than 150 people this year.

Authorities said 11 members of Boko Haram were killed and two soldiers wounded on Saturday night when the group attacked a military patrol in Maiduguri with explosives.
“At about 1930 (1830 GMT), a patrol team of the Joint Military Task Force was attacked with improvised explosive devices and several gunshots from a building in a bus park,” Colonel Victor Ebhaleme told the media on Sunday.

Bomb blasts in the north have replaced militant attacks on oil facilities hundreds of kilometres (miles) away in the southern Niger Delta as the main security threat in Nigeria. The United States and European Union have condemned the violence.