Nigeria Arrests 6 for Deadly Bombings

Posted September 6th, 2011 at 10:16 am (UTC-5)
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Nigeria's secret police say they have arrested six people linked to a radical Islamic sect suspected of bombing an elections office and a church earlier this year.

Nigeria's State Security Service said Tuesday the detainees belong to Boko Haram, which authorities blame for dozens of bombings and shootings around the country.

The security agency says the six men are charged with two bombings in Suleija, a town near the capital, Abuja.

The first bombing took place at an elections office on April 8, the eve of National Assembly polls. At least eight people were killed. The church bombing took place on July 10 and killed three people.

Authorities also said Tuesday they had discovered a bomb-making factory near Suleija.

The secret police did not say if the six detainees were suspected of taking part in the bombing of the U.N. headquarters in Abuja last month. Boko Haram claimed responsibility for that attack, which killed at least 23 people.

The Nigerian government has been under increasing pressure to stem a wave of bombings and assassinations either claimed by or blamed on Boko Haram.

The radical group wants a strict form of Islamic law applied more widely across Africa's most populous nation.

The group's name in the Hausa language means “Western education is a sin.”