Police in the northern Nigerian city of Bauchi say they are searching for the reason for a deadly blast overnight. The explosion wracked a local brothel. No claim of responsibility has yet been made.
“The entire area has been cordoned off and [the] scene secured,” Bauchi state police spokesperson Mohammed Haruna said.
“No arrest has been made but an investigation has commenced to ascertain the cause,” he added.
The northeastern city lies roughly 450 kilometers (280 miles) northeast of the capital city Abuja.
No claim of responsibility
While no group had claimed responsibility for the attack, authorities in the West African country generally look for clues of involvement by the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram.
Militants from the organization, whose names translates to “Western education is sin,” have staged increasingly deadly attacks this year. According to an estimate by the news agency AFP, the violence has claimed roughly 2,000 lives since the beginning of this year.
Boko Haram began waging war against the Nigerian government in 2009 and seeks to introduce an Islamic state.
Roughly half of Nigeria’s population is Muslim and 40 percent of it Christian.
The group has received increased international attention this year after it kidnapped some 250 school girls, aged between 16 and 18, in mid-April.
Michelle Obama – the wife of US President Barack Obama – kicked off a campaign on the social media site Twitter, dubbed #bringbackourgirls.
The movement has raised not only international awareness about the plight of the victims’ situation, but also raised the visibility of the havoc wrought upon Nigeria in recent years by Boko Haram.
kms/ipj (AFP, Reuters)