Football stadium blast kills scores in northern Nigeria

A bomb blast targeting a football match in northeastern Nigeria killed at least 40 people on Sunday, police sources said. The attack took place in the town of Mubi, which has seen previous attacks by Boko Haram Islamists.

Football stadium blast

Football stadium blast

“There has been a bomb explosion at a football field this evening and so far more than 40 people have been killed,” said the officer, who requested anonymity.

A military source said several bodies had been recovered, and the dead and wounded were still being evacuated from the area.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility but Islamist militant group Boko Haram, whose deadly struggle for an Islamic state is concentrated in the northeast, would likely be the prime suspect in the attack.

The town of Mubi in Adamawa state was the site of a 2012 Boko Haram attack on a student housing complex that left at least 40 people dead.

The group has also set off several bombs across north and central Nigeria in the past two months.

Last weekend a suicide bomber set out to strike an open-air viewing of a football match in the central city of Jos, but the car blew up before reaching the target, killing three people.

A suicide bombing the week before in Jos killed 118 people, and two bombs on the outskirts of Abuja in April killed 95 between them.

Boko Haram, whose name means ‘Western education is sinful’ in the Haussa language, stirred an international outcry with the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls in northern Nigeria on April 14. The group subsequently threatened to sell the girls.

Fifty-seven of the girls have since escaped but 219 remain hostages.

(Geo Urdu with AFP and REUTERS)