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Nigeria: six killed over religious riots in Bauchi

Fresh religious riots broke out in Bauchi state  in Northern Nigeria yesterday with about six people feared death

Sources said PrLocation of Bauchi State in Nigeriaesident Umaru Yar’Adua ordered immediate deployment of soldiers to quell the riot. The 3rd Armoured Brigadein Jos has relocated to Bauchi in response to the killing. An indefinite curfew has also been placed on the affected areas

According to a Presidency source, the intervention of Yar’Adua had assisted in restoring peace to Bauchi.

David Ayodele of Bachi Radio Corporation told via phone 12.29 am today that the situation is returning to normalcy but there is still ‘tension’.

The State Governor Isa Yuguda expressed shock over the incidence describing it as most unfortunate. The six were reportedly killed in a riot which was said to be triggered by the burning of a mosque at about 2:00 a.m. in Railway and Makama Ward (Federal Low Cost Area) of the state capital.

Reports had it that trouble started following the action of some youths who denied a sect of Moslems from observing the weekly Juma’ at prayers due to what was said to be opposition to the sitting of the Mosque in the area while security report on the matter was alleged to have been ignored.

At about 11:00 p.m. on Friday some yet to be identified people were said to have set the Mosque ablaze, a development which was said to have also led to the torching of a part of the building of COCIN Church in the area at about 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

According to the Tribune newspaper, two people were burnt beyond recognition on the Railway road while a number of houses and cars were either torched or smashed. Many people, both Christians and Moslems, who fled their homes, were still taking refuge at the Shadawanka Army Barracks as well as other security places in Bauchi.

Following the outbreak of riot in Bauchi State, security has been beefed up in Jos, capital of Pleteau State and its environs, even as the State Deputy Commissioner of Police declared that there was no plan to withdraw security men from the streets of Jos.

A combined team of the police and soldiers have continued to intensify patrol of the city and the checking of vehicles coming in and going out of the state capital over the development in neighboring Bauchi State.

In their respective calls, the Bauchi State chapter of CAN called on all Christians in the state to remain calm and do everything possible to protect lives and properties of the people of the state.

On behalf of the Moslem Ummah, the Chief Imam of ATBU Juma’ at Mosque, Idris Aliyu Ibrahim Pantami, warned Moslems against rumor mongering.

The State Police Command PPRO Mohammed Barau confirmed the crisis in a telephone interview but declined to reveal the number of deaths or persons injured, saying that he with other superior officers has gone round to monitor the situation.