Gunmen attack Nigerian police station

2012-01-30 09:45

Kano, Nigeria – Gunmen opened fire on a police station in Nigeria’s flashpoint city of Kano at dawn today, setting off a gun battle with police, residents said, the latest in a wave of such attacks.

It is the second time in three days that the Mandawari police station has come under attack in Kano, the country’s second biggest city and the scene of one of the deadliest days of violence blamed on the Islamist sect Boko Haram.

“It was crazy. These guys came on motorcycles and opened fire on the police station but they met tough resistance from the police, and it lasted around 20 minutes,” Jamilu Muhammad, who lives across the police station, told AFP.

On Saturday, the purported spokesperson of the insurgents ruled out dialogue with Nigerian authorities and instead warned it would spread its attacks to another northern city in Africa’s most populous country.

Witnesses said it was not yet clear if there were any casualties today, and police were not immediately available for comment.

“From my house I heard gunshots at exactly 5:50am coming from around the police station,” said a local journalist who lives in the neighbourhood.

He said motorcyles were racing up and down his street as the sound of gunfire rang around the police station.

The attack occurred during Muslim morning prayers in the Mandawari neighbourhood, not far from the palace of the emir of Kano, the most important traditional leader in the city.

Kano remains under a dusk-to-dawn curfew imposed following the series of bombings and shootings on January 20 that mainly targeted police stations and killed at least 185 people.

Today’s attack was the fourth on police buildings since then.

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