Nigeria, Boko Haram claims attacks on two churches: eight dead and over 50 injured
Lagos (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Boko Haram, a terrorist group linked to al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the bombings yesterday in Nigeria, who have sown violence between Christian communities in center and north of the country. In Jos (central Nigeria), a suicide bomber blew himself up with his car in front of the local Christian church. About 50 people were injured in the collapse of the building, 41 are in critical condition. A Biu (North East of the country), a group of gunmen opened fire on worshipers during Mass, killing a woman. The attacks have triggered the reprisal of Christians in Jos. Shortly after the bombing of the church in Jos, a group of young men left unscathed by the collapse attacked some Muslims in the area of the explosion. Seven people were killed in the clashes. Ben Kwashi, Anglican Archbishop of Jos, condemned the attacks, but urged Christians to avoid unnecessary reprisals that only aggravate the situation.
The attacks come a week from another suicide attack on a church in Bauchi City (north-east of the country) that claimed 12 deaths.
Since 2009 the Boko Haram group has carried out numerous attacks against churches, schools, police stations and government buildings in northern Nigeria, which cost more than 1000 deaths. Experts fear new attacks in the coming months. Boko Haram, whose name means "No Western education", wants to impose Sharia law in Nigeria.
For several years, extremist groups funded by Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have launched a radical Islamization of the countries in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly Nigeria, Niger and Mali. In an interview with Al-Jazeera Mahmadou Issoufou, president of Niger launched an alert to combat the spread of Islamic terrorism in African countries, also caused by the fall of the Libyan leader Gaddafi.