Nigerian authorities and witnesses say a suicide car bomber has rammed into a church in the northern city of Kaduna, killing at least seven people and triggering reprisal attacks that killed another two.
The bomber drove a jeep into St Rita's church in Kaduna's Malali district during Sunday morning prayers, causing a large explosion. Rescuers rushed the casualties to hospitals. Witnesses said angry Christian youths armed with machetes and sticks roamed the streets after the bombing, beating two suspected Muslims to death in the religiously-mixed city.
There was no immediate claim of the responsibility for the church blast.
Nigerian Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram has attacked several churches with bombs and guns in the past year. The group claimed responsibility for three church bombings in Kaduna state in June. Those attacks killed at least 50 people and increased sectarian tensions in Kaduna, which is located on a dividing line between Nigeria's predominantly Muslim north and mostly Christian south.
Nigerian authorities blame Boko Haram for the killings of more than 1,500 people including police and government officials since 2009. The terrorists are fighting for Sharia law to be applied across northern Nigeria. VoA.