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The explosion also destroyed 16 buses, 24 minibuses and dozens of parked cars at the Nyanya Motor Park, police sources said.
Although there was no immediate claim of responsibility, fingers were quickly pointed at Boko Harm, the Islamist group which has fought 10 years for a separatist state based on Sharia law in the northeast of the country.
“The issue of Boko Haram is quite an ugly history within this period of our own development,” Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said after visiting the blast site and meeting with injured in local hospitals.
“Government is doing everything to make sure that we move our country forward … But the issue of Boko Haram is temporary. Surely, we will get over it.”
Boko Haram debuted on the Nigerian stage in 2002 and has been calling for an end to secular-based law, to be replaced with Islamic Sharia law. It has been fighting government forces and raiding villages ever since, particularly in the country’s northeast.
The uptick in Boko Haram attacks in the northeastern states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa, appears to come in response to a Nigerian military operation, which began last summer, to uproot the hard-line Islamist group, and a declaration of a state of emergency by Jonathan.
Two weeks ago, Nigeria’s Senate President David Mark told visiting UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson that international efforts are required to end the threat from the Boko Haram militant group.