November 27, 2012
Surprising Target of Latest Nigeria Bombing: Elite Military Church
(Updated) Meanwhile, Christian vigilantes kill Muslim at illegal church checkpoint.
Update (March 1): Morning Star News reports that Mohammed Isa, a Nigerian military commander, had prior knowledge of plans to bomb St. Andrews Chapel at the Command and Staff College in Nigeria—but failed to report the knowledge and avert the November 2012 attack that killed 20 Christians.
In addition, Morning Star reports that two Islamist extremists from the Boko Haram sect have been arrested in connection with the bombing.
In late October, the radical Islamist sect drove an SUV full of explosives into Sunday morning mass at a Catholic church in Kaduna. This past Sunday, a similar attack at St. Andrew Military Protestant Church at an elite military training center in Jaji, about 30 kilometers from the capital city of Abuja, killed at least 30 people, the Associated Press reports.
Boko Haram has not claimed responsibility for the attack, but it bears striking resemblance to the group's previous church bombings. However, there's a key difference: This attack occurred on a military base, which would have been difficult to arrange without insider help.
According to Open Doors News, military spokesman Major General Bola Koleoso said in a text message that "a bus first ran into the church and exploded about five minutes after the service, while a Toyota Camry parked outside the church detonated 10 minutes later."
Another military spokesperson said the majority of casualties occurred after the second explosion.
Meanwhile, the AP also reports that a one Muslim resident was killed after passing through a Christian church's illegal checkpoint, set up "to stop Muslims from nearing their church during their services as a response to church attacks in other parts of the country." The incident sparked riots, killing another four people, and shows "how communities have lost faith in government's ability to protect them."