Military says 11 died in Jaji church attack

Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau

A military spokesperson confirmed the casualty to the BBC.

The suicide bomb attack on a church inside a Jaji military compound in Kaduna State killed 11 people, a military spokesperson, quoted by the BBC, said.

At least 30 others were injured in the blast that occurred, Sunday afternoon within the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, the unnamed official said.

The College is a major training school for the Nigerian military.

Two explosions rocked the facility in a daring attack that appeared aimed at embarrassing the military which has recently claimed victory against insurgent group, Boko Haram.

No group has however claimed responsibility for the Sunday attacks, although security officials suspect they may have been carried out by the Islamist group.

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The attack comes about 48 hours after security forces declared the leadership of the Boko Haram wanted and placed a bounty on them.

The military spokesman said two vehicles were driven into the barracks in what he described as “surprising and an embarrassment”, the BBC said.

One of the vehicles, a bus, entered the barracks and was driven into the wall of the church where it exploded. Ten minutes later, a car blew up outside the church.

“The first blast caused no casualties and curious worshippers gathered around the scene looking at the debris… and that was when the second blast happened,” the military official was quoted as saying.

Earlier reports of the incident suggested at least five persons died.

A witness said the second vehicle was a KIA car which drove into the church premises and waved at a choir group before detonating the bomb.

Most members of the church congregation had left the church at the time of the attack , the witness, quoted by Reuters said.

“What really amazed us is that the usual security detail at the gate of the church was not deployed today. The security of the church was left at the mercy of the Church’s Boys Brigade,” he said.

Witnesses reported seeing bodies at the scene, and people being carried away on stretchers.

“I saw five bodies and scores injured and the entire cantonment has been sealed off,” a witness said.

The Public Relations Officer of Infantry Corpse Command, Major Adeniyi, confirmed the explosions.

He however could not confirm the casualty figure.

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