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Boko Haram: 18 die as explosion hits Maiduguri market …Kaduna blast injures 2

By The Citizen

At least 18 people have been killed in an explosion at a market in Maiduguri, north-eastern Nigeria, a medical worker has told the BBC.

The explosives were reportedly hidden in a vehicle carrying charcoal.

No group has said it carried out the attack but Maiduguri is the epicentre of the violent campaign waged by militant group Boko Haram.

Earlier, the Nigerian army said it had broken up a Boko Haram cell linked to the abduction of 200 schoolgirls.

“A van loaded with charcoal and IED [improvised explosive device] exploded at Monday Market in Maiduguri this morning. The location has been cordoned,” the defence headquarters said on its Twitter account.

The vehicle exploded into a huge fireball, AFP news agency quotes a witness as saying.

A medical worker has reported that in addition to the 18 killed, 55 people were wounded in the blast.

“I heard a very loud explosion right from my house and rushed to the place,” one resident told the BBC.

“When I got there I saw many people lying after they were hit by explosives,” he said.

It was suspected that a suicide bomber carried out the blast.

Meanwhile, there was a bomb explosion along Nnamdi Azikiwe Express Way in Kaduna metropolis on Tuesday night.

The explosion reportedly occurred at about 7.30pm, but only two persons, who were probably passers-by, were injured by the roadside blast.

Security operatives have cordoned off the area and trying to ascertain the cause and nature of the blast.