U.S. warns of terrorist attacks in Nigerian capital

November 7th, 2011 - 5:30 pm ICT by BNO News  

ABUJA (BNO NEWS) — The U.S. government on Sunday warned that it has received information that the Boko Haram Islamist militant group is planning to attack several hotels in the Nigerian capital of Abuja.

An emergency message from the U.S. Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria said potential targets may include the Nicon Luxury, the Sheraton Hotel and the Transcorp Hilton Hotel. It said the attacks may be carried out during the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, which ends on Wednesday.

“All U.S. Government personnel have been instructed to avoid these locations, and previously scheduled events have been cancelled,” the emergency message said. “American citizens should expect additional police and military checkpoints, additional security, and possible road blocks in Abuja for the foreseeable future.”

The U.S. Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria urged U.S. citizens in Abuja to exercise additional caution and maintain a high state of vigilance and personal awareness, particularly in and around Abuja near Nigerian government facilities, diplomatic missions, large gathering places, hotels, markets and malls, and places of worship.

The warning comes just days after the Boko Haram, which is also known as the Nigerian Taliban, carried out a three-hour bombing and shooting rampage in the city of Damaturu in Yobe state. The attacks left at least 82 people killed and more than 100 others injured.

The Boko Haram group has been blamed by Nigerian officials for most of the region’s terrorist attacks and seeks the imposition of an extremist stance of the Shariah law, which is a Muslim code of conduct. The group’s name, ‘Boko Haram’ in the local language of Hausa, roughly translates as ‘Western religion is sacrilegious’ or ‘non-Islamic religion is a sin.’

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