Kano: The death toll of deadly car blast at a bus station in a Christian neighborhood in Kano has increased upto 41 people, making it one of the deadliest attack in nine months that is blamed on Islamic extremists.
At least 44 others were also injured in the attack. Kano state police said Tuesday that two men rammed an explosive-laden blue VW Golf into a full passenger bus in a mainly Christian enclave in the predominantly Muslim commercial center.
By striking at about 5 p.m. Monday, the bombers seemed to have targeted passengers preparing for the 15-hour overnight road trip to the megacity of Lagos in Nigeria’s south, loved ones bidding them farewell and vendors selling drinks and snacks. The blast triggered panic and pandemonium in a city that has seen similar violence in the past.
Kano police chief Musa Daura had said in a statement that at least 22 people had died, but the rescue official said there were 41 deaths at least. He said there were 21 bodies were at Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital and 20 more at Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, said rescue officials. They are also treating 41 and 3 injured respectively. Police has downplayed figures in the past to avoid reprisals.
No group claimed responsibility for the attack, but suspicion immediately fell on the radical Islamic network Boko Haram.
Monday’s attack came more than a year after the Jan. 20 coordinated Boko Haram attacks that left more than 150 people dead in Kano. It also came about nine months after a trio of attacks on churches in the cities of Zaria and Kaduna claimed by the group, setting off violence that eclipsed the original attacks, bringing the death toll to at least 98 people.
The group has been waging a campaign of bombings and shootings across Nigeria’s north. It is held responsible for more than 790 deaths last year alone, and dozens more since the beginning of this year.