Holiday Gift Guide
Gift ideas & reviews for this holiday season
You are here:
Business & Finance
The Great Debate
Do More With Reuters
You Witness News
Make Reuters My Homepage
Support (Customer Zone)
About Thomson Reuters
Clashes kill at least 20 in Nigerian city of Jos
Fri Nov 28, 2008 12:20pm EST
Email | Print |
| Reprints | Single Page
By Shuaibu Mohammed
JOS, Nigeria (Reuters) - Clashes between rival ethnic and religious groups in the central Nigerian city of Jos killed at least 20 people on Friday, injured hundreds more and forces thousands from their homes, the Red Cross said.
Authorities imposed a night-time curfew on the capital of the central Plateau state and soldiers deployed on the streets after rival gangs burned churches, mosques and homes in a dispute triggered by a local election.
The unrest is the most serious of its kind in Africa's most populous nation, roughly equally split between Christians and Muslims, since President Umaru Yar'Adua took power in May 2007.
"Over 20 people died. Churches and mosques and 100 houses were burned down," a senior Red Cross official, who asked not to be named, told Reuters. He said more than 300 people were injured.
Youths with machetes hacked to death a policeman and burned tires in one part of the city, sending plumes of thick black smoke into the air, witnesses said.
"All law-abiding citizens are assured that government is on top of the situation and should go about their normal lives," Jonah Jang, governor of Plateau state of which Jos is the capital, said in a broadcast.
"Government is imposing a curfew in Jos ... and the environs from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. (1700-0500 GMT). Government wishes to advise against any further attempt to test its will to maintain peace on the Plateau," he said.
The violence was triggered by a disputed vote for a new local government chairman in Jos North, the commercial center of Plateau state.
Residents said demonstrators from the Hausa ethnic group began protesting in the early hours of Friday after a rumor spread that their ANPP party candidate had lost the race to the ruling PDP party.
"The group said they were not fighting people but fighting government because of their action," said one witness, who asked not to be named.
Christians and Muslims generally live peacefully side by side in Africa's top oil producer, a country of 140 million people. But hostility has simmered in the past in Plateau state.
Hundreds were killed in ethnic-religious street fighting in Jos in 2001. Three years later, hundreds more died in clashes in the town of Yelwa, leading then-President Olusegun Obasanjo to declare a state of emergency and impose a curfew.
The tensions in Plateau state have their roots in decades of resentment by indigenous minority groups, who are mostly Christian or animist, toward migrants and settlers from Nigeria's Hausa-speaking Muslim north.
The official results of Thursday's vote have not yet been announced but ANPP observers at polling stations had forecast a clear win for their candidate. Continued...
View article on single page
Russian leader meets Fidel Castro in Cuba
You Witness News
Did you witness the attacks? We are inviting citizen photojournalists to send in their best images. If you think your picture captures the moment, please send it to email@example.com. Full Coverage
Gunmen seize Scottish oil worker in Nigerian delta
A selection of our best photos from the past 24 hours. Slideshow
Lifestyle: Laos still paying price of Vietnam war
Business: Indonesian tribe immune to global crisis
Technology: Blogs feed info frenzy on Mumbai
Most Popular on Reuters
Gunfire, explosions rock Mumbai hotel | Video
Staff emerge as heroes in Mumbai hotel sieges
Surging shoppers kill New York Wal-Mart worker
UPDATE 1-Surging shoppers kill New York Wal-Mart worker
Citigroup bailout slammed by New Yorkers
Scientists crack iceberg mystery
GM asks government to block public tracking of jet
Shoppers seek deals, buy less on Black Friday | Video
Holiday sales begin before turkey grows cold
Testing for cancer at home
Most Popular Articles RSS Feed
India siege continues
Hostages released in Mumbai terror
NY a buzz with Thanksgiving parade
Iraqi parliament backs US pullout
Grief for Mumbai massacre victims
Huge flames at Mumbai hotel
Russia, Venezuela military exercise
Thai PM declares state of emergency
Militants battle on in Mumbai
Mumbai tourists back on home soil
Most Popular Videos RSS Feed
Attacks in Mumbai
Witness: Night of fear
Phil Smith, South Asia Editor for Reuters, describes his experience covering the attacks in Mumbai. Full Article
Who could be behind the Mumbai attacks and why? Full Article
Whatever group is responsible, experts say one thing is clear: a city can be reduced to mayhem if a group is well-enough armed and prepared to die. Full Article
Islamabad to Mumbai
Reuters' Simon Cameron-Moore reflects on the vulnerability of India's porous cities. Blog
Score of people were killed in a series of attacks apparently aimed at tourists in India's financial capital. Slideshow
The global destination for corporate leaders, deal-makers and innovators
Knowledge to Act
Help and Contact Us |
Advertise With Us |
Interactive TV |
Reuters in Second Life |
Site Index |
Thomson Reuters Corporate:
Professional Products |
Professional Products Support |
About Thomson Reuters |
Latin America |
United Kingdom |
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.