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Communal clashes in Nigeria claim 192 lives

January 20, 2010 02:24 IST

At least 192 people have been killed in clashes between Muslims and Christians in Nigeria, even as the country's Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan ordered country's military to step up efforts to put an end to the communal violence in the north of the country.

Exacerbated clashes in the city of Jos, the capital of Pateau state in northern Nigeria has caused the casualty figure to rise to 192.

The clashes between Christians and Muslims erupted over alleged burning of a church. Mortuary sources have been quoted as saying the number of dead bodies received are increasing by the day while an witness told PTI some people who wear military uniforms partake in the killings.

"We do not know the difference between the military and civilian assailants," a medical doctor and postgraduate student of University of Jos, Chigozie Ibeneme told PTI on phone from the city, adding that everybody is scared and praying.

The Red Cross said they are taking care of more than 5,000 displaced persons and some wounded in the fracas.

Governments of neighbouring states have beefed up security to forestall spread of the crisis. As if realising the intensity of the violence for the first time, an order was sent to all the northern Nigeria states police command to commence full patrol of their areas and intelligent gathering so as to avoid spread of the riot to their states by the inspector-general of the country's police, Ogbonnaya Onovo.

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