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Nigeria

Blast hits bus station outside Nigeria's capital Abuja

An explosion has ripped through a bus station outside Nigeria's capital Abuja, killing dozens of people. The blast comes one day after suspected Islamist militants attacked several villages in the country's northeast.

Suicide bombing hits Nigerian capital

The blast occurred Monday at 6:45 am (0545 GMT) at the crowded Nyanyan Motor Park, just outside the capital, police said.

"We have a total of 71 dead and 124 others injured. (The wounded) are receiving treatment at hospitals within and around" Abuja, national police spokesman Frank Mba told reporters.

Charles Otegbade, the head of search and rescue operations at the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), said one of the blasts "emanated from a vehicle" within the bus station but the precise nature of the blast is still unknown.

Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan visited the site of the bombing, and blamed Boko Haram Islamists.

"The issue of Boko Haram is quite an ugly history within this period of our own development," Jonathan said.

"But we will get over it ... the issue of Boko Haram is temporary."

Boko Haram has been waging a bloody insurgency in the country's northeast since 2009 that has killed thousands of people and forced many more to flee to other parts of Nigeria.

In one of its most prominent attacks, the group carried out a suicide car bombing at a United Nations building in the capital in 2011 that killed at least 26 people.

The latest blast comes one day after suspected Islamist militants killed at least 60 people in an attack on several villages in Nigeria's northeastern Borno state.

hc/dr (Reuters, AFP)

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