News

    Easter Bomber Strikes in Northern Nigeria

    Security personnel inspect the mangled remains of bomb-laden car that exploded  along junction road near a church, Kaduna, Nigeria,  April 8, 2012.
    Security personnel inspect the mangled remains of bomb-laden car that exploded along junction road near a church, Kaduna, Nigeria, April 8, 2012.
    Anne Look

    A bombing in northern Nigeria killed at least 20 people and wounded several others on Easter Sunday despite ramped-up security throughout the region.  No one immediately claimed responsibility, though many suspect the militant Islamist group Boko Haram, which is known to target Christians around holidays.  

    Police say a car laden with explosives blew up on a main city street in the northern city of Kaduna Sunday at 8:45 a.m. local time.

    Witnesses said the explosion primarily hit motorcycle taxi drivers, panhandlers and women preparing street food.

    Some suspect the intended target was a nearby Christian church.

    Kaduna police spokesman Aminu Lawal told VOA that police are still investigating where the bomber was headed.

    "The church also is situated by the roadside and it is not far from the roundabout so maybe he wanted to pass through there but when he discovered the security men were at alert then he could not be able to approach that particular area," said Lawal.

    The leader of a Christian interfaith association in Kaduna, David Obadiah, arrived at the scene just after the blast.

    He said emergency workers were rushing more than a dozen critically wounded people from the scene and the street was littered with burned-out motorcycles and what was left of the bomber's vehicle.

    "Honestly one cannot say precisely that the target is a Christian church but today is Easter Sunday and at the time that the bomb was detonated, accidentally or whatever, it was during church services because people are about going to church and some were in the church already," said Obadiah.

    He said he was worried that jumping to conclusions would lead to widespread panic.

    Security was ramped up throughout northern Nigeria for Easter weekend after security forces said they thwarted several plots to attack Christians.

    The extremist group Boko Haram is known to target Christians during holidays.

    Boko Haram claimed responsibility for Christmas Eve bombings in 2010 and Christmas Day attacks in 2011 that each killed dozens of people in northern Nigeria.

    Security forces in the sect's northeastern base, Maiduguri, said they raided a militant hideout Sunday, killing three suspected Boko Haram members, arresting two others and recovering guns and ammunition. Authorities said the suspects were behind last week's attack on Christian traders in a city market that killed 11 people.

    The Joint Task Force in Maiduguri also said it had discovered and disposed of an improvised explosive device planted in a city neighborhood Sunday afternoon.  

    Human Rights Watch says Boko Haram has killed more than 1,000 people since its resurgence in 2010.

    Celebrating Easter Mass in Rome, Pope Benedict denounced what he called "savage terrorist attacks" in Nigeria.

    Pope Benedict said he hopes the joy of Easter may grant Nigeria the strength needed to take up anew the building of a society which is peaceful and respectful of the religious freedom of its citizens.

    The Nigerian government has struggled to contain the growing security threat as factions of varying extremism have split off from the core Boko Haram cell.

    Boko Haram's name in the Hausa language means "Western education is sacrilege." The group wants to impose Islamic law in northern Nigeria.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora