21 people have been killed in a bomb blast in Nigeria’s capital Abuja, as the violence across the nation continues.
Emab Plaza, a shopping centre in the area, was attacked while shoppers prepared for Nigeria’s match against Argentina on Wednesday afternoon.
It is thought that terrorist group, Boko Haram, who have staged several attacks Nigeria’s northern states, over the last few weeks, are responsible for this attack, although this has not been confirmed.
Anonymous witnesses stated that they saw people fleeing the building with blood covered clothes, and that there were several body parts scattered at the shopping centres exit. Accordng to police several vehicles were also destroyed during the explosion. One witness who had been shopping while his driver waited for him in his car said: “I saw a lot of fire and the next thing to see, I went to see my car and I saw my driver is dead. A lot of casualties, nobody can say. And remember the victims are innocent people.”
A suspect who tried to escape the scene was shot and killed by soldiers, while another had been detained.
President Goodluck Jonathan returned early from an AU summit in Maluba as a result of the attacks.
UN secretary-general Bam Ki-Moon, expressed his disgust over the attacks and in statement said that he ‘’remains deeply concerned about the escalation of violence in Nigeria.”
The minister for Africa Mark Simmons also issued a statement. He said:
“I am deeply concerned by yesterday’s bombing in Abuja, the third since April. We condemn all acts of terrorism in the strongest terms. Terrorism has brought untold misery to innocent Nigerians of all faiths and backgrounds. We will stand with the Nigerian authorities as they seek to bring the perpetrators of this appalling crime to justice.”
“The listing today of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau and the terrorist organisation Ansaru at the UN demonstrates the commitment of the international community to stand by the people of Nigeria as they confront the scourge of terrorism. Participants at the London Ministerial on Security in Northern Nigeria on 12 June committed to securing these listings. The UK co-sponsored the listings, a sign of our commitment to defeating terrorism.”
Over 2000 people have been killed by bomb blasts in Nigeria this year. Just last week several people were killed in an attack while they were watching the world cup.
While Nigeria’s government claims that it is in control of the situation, the growing number of attacks within the country as well as the fact that the 200 girls who were abducted over 2 months ago are yet to be found, suggests otherwise.