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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Nigeria Blasts: Eleven Dead at Kaduna Barracks Church

By Jeremy Reynalds
Senior Correspondent for ASSIST News Service

NIGERIA (ANS) -- Suicide bombers have attacked a church inside a military barracks in Kaduna state in northern Nigeria, killing 11 people and injuring 30, officials say.

According to a story by the BBC, a military spokesman said two vehicles were driven into the barracks in Jaji in what he described as “surprising and an embarrassment.”

It is not clear who was responsible for the attack. However, the BBC said, the army suspects the Islamist militant group Boko Haram, which has recently targeted churches in the state.

The group is fighting to overthrow the government and impose an extreme form of Sharia, or Islamic law.

The BBC's Will Ross in Lagos said that while Christians and churches are frequently targeted, this incident looks more like a direct attack on the military.

On Friday, Nigeria's military offered a reward of 50m naira ($317,000) for help in tracking down suspected Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, and 10m each for other suspected leaders of the group.

“Curious worshipers”

The military said a bus entered the barracks and was driven into the wall of the church where it exploded.

The BBC reported that ten minutes later, a car blew up outside the church.

“The first blast caused no casualties and curious worshipers gathered around the scene looking at the debris... and that was when the second blast happened,” the military spokesman said.

According to the BBC, eyewitnesses reported seeing bodies at the scene, and people being carried away on stretchers.

At least 50 people were killed in bombings in Kaduna in June and the reprisals that followed.

Almost a month ago, the BBC reported, seven people died in a suicide bombing at a Roman Catholic church in the state.

Kaduna is on the dividing line between Nigeria's mainly Christian south and the north, which has a large Muslim majority.


Jeremy Reynalds is Senior Correspondent for the ASSIST News Service, a freelance writer and also the founder and CEO of Joy Junction, New Mexico's largest emergency homeless shelter, http://www.joyjunction.org He has a master's degree in communication from the University of New Mexico, and a Ph.D. in intercultural education from Biola University in Los Angeles. His newest book is "Homeless in the City."


Additional details on "Homeless in the City" are available at http://www.homelessinthecity.com. Reynalds lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. For more information contact: Jeremy Reynalds at jeremyreynalds@comcast.net.

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