May 18, 2013
Suicide bomber kills 8, injures 100 in Nigerian church
A suicide bomber drove a jeep packed with explosives into a Catholic church in northern Nigeria, killing at least eight people, injuring more than 100 and triggering reprisal attacks that killed at least two more, officials said.
The bomber drove right into the packed St Rita's church in the Malali area of Kaduna, a volatile ethnically and religiously mixed city, in the morning, witnesses said.
A spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) Yushua Shuaib said eight people had been confirmed killed and more than 100 injured.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility but Islamist sect Boko Haram has claimed similar attacks in the past and has attacked several churches with bombs and guns as it intensified its campaign against Christians in the past year.
"The heavy explosion also damaged so many buildings around the area," said survivor Linus Lighthouse.
A wall of the church was blasted open and scorched black, with debris lying around. Police cordoned the area off.
Church attacks often target Nigeria's middle belt, where its largely Christian south and mostly Muslim north meet and where sectarian tensions run high. Kaduna's mixed population lies along that faultline.