Nigerian Twin Bombings Claim 118 Lives
The number of people killed in a twin bombing in the Nigerian city of Jos has risen to at least 118.Police in the state of Plateau said dozens more were injured in the explosions at a bus terminal and market.
Earlier reports had said 10 people had died. There are fears more bodies will be recovered from the wreckage of burning buildings.
One witness described hearing a “loud bang that shook my whole house” before seeing rising smoke. The blasts happened within 15 minutes of each other in the afternoon.
They ignited fires which were still burning eight hours later, according to the National Emergency Management Agency.
Mohammed Abdulsalam, zonal coordinator for the agency, told the Associated Press news agency: “Firemen are still trying to put them out. We believe we will find more bodies.”
The country’s president, Goodluck Jonathan, said those behind the explosions were “cruel and evil”.
He said: “The government remains fully committed to winning the war against terror, and this administration will not be cowed by the atrocities of enemies of human progress and civilisation.”
The Islamist sect Boko Haram is believed to be a prime suspect, although there was no immediate claim of responsibility. The group’s insurgency has seen a series of bomb attacks in the north and centre of the country.
It has been widely condemned for the abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls from a village in the northeast of the country, which has prompted countries including the UK and the US to offer assistance in rescuing them.
The group previously said it was behind a church bombing in Jos, and two other sites, on December 25, 2011.
Jos is in an area known as the “Middle Belt”, where the largely Christian south and mostly Muslim north meet.
Five people were killed when a suicide bomber struck in the northern city of Kano on Sunday.