, LAGOS, December 25 – An explosion hit a church near the Nigerian capital Abuja on Christmas morning, an emergency official said, adding that there were casualties, but he could not immediately provide a figure.
“Explosion in St. Theresa Church close to Abuja,” said Yushau Shuaib, spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency of the blast in the Madalla area. “There are casualties, but we can’t talk about figures for now.”
People were inside the church at the time of the blast, but Shuaib could not say how many.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility, though Nigeria has been hit by scores of bomb blasts and shootings attributed to Islamist group Boko Haram.
The group claimed responsibility for the August suicide bombing of UN headquarters in Abuja that killed at least 24 people.
Attacks blamed on Boko Haram followed by a heavy military crackdown in the country’s northeast in recent days killed up to 100 people, authorities and a rights group has said.