Nigeria police on patrol after dozens die in clashes

Armed police continued to patrol the streets in Jos and surrounding areas to deter further unrest.

Nigeria police on patrol after dozens die in clashes

At least 80 people were killed in bombings and clashes two days later between Christian and Muslim youths in central Nigeria, officials say.

The police said on Saturday 32 people were killed in the bomb attacks but with more than 100 wounded in hospital the death count was expected to rise.

"We have recovered 80 dead bodies so far in Jos," Daniel Gambo, an official at the Nigerian emergency management agency said late on Monday.

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(People gather to pray at a mass grave for the victims of religious riots, in Nigeria's central city of Jos.)

The chief of defence staff said two suspects were arrested in Jos, the capital of Plateau state, in possession of dynamite and dangerous weapons on Monday.

Armed police continued to patrol the streets in Jos and surrounding areas on Tuesday to deter further unrest.

A series of explosions on Friday led to religious violence which flares up sporadically in the central "Middle Belt" of Africa's most populous nation, where the largely Muslim north meets the mostly Christian south.

Hundreds of people died in religious and ethnic clashes at the start of the year but co-ordinated bomb attacks have not featured in previous violence and the governor of Plateau state has said the attacks were politically motivated.

The unrest has come as President Goodluck Jonathan is running a controversial campaign ahead of the ruling party's primaries on Jan. 13.

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(People wave as soldiers patrol the streets using an armoured vehicle in Nigeria's central city of Jos.)

A ruling party pact says that power within the People's Democratic Party (PDP) should rotate between the mostly Muslim north and largely Christian south every two terms.

Jonathan is a southerner who inherited office when President Umaru Yar'Adua, a northerner, died during his first term this year and northern factions in the ruling party are opposed to his candidacy.

Jonathan faces a challenge from former Vice President Atiku Abubakar for the ruling party nomination.


Agencies

Last Mod: 28 Aralık 2010, 15:27
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