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UN chief condemns Nigerian church attacks

(Xinhua)

10:54, December 26, 2011

UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 25 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday condemned "in the strongest terms" the attacks targeting churches in Madala, on the outskirts of the Nigerian capital Abuja and the north-eastern city of Jos, which have left many dead and injured.

The secretary-general expresses his sympathy and condolences to the people of Nigeria and to the bereaved families who have lost loved ones, said a statement issued by his spokesperson.

"The secretary-general calls once again for an end to all acts of sectarian violence in the country and reiterates his firm conviction that no objective sought can justify this resort to violence," the statement said.

At least 25 bodies have been recovered from the Madala Christmas day bomb blast scene, said a Xinhua reporter on Sunday in Abuja.

The reporter said six bodies were burnt beyond recognition while 19 others can still be identified.

The blast occurred early on Sunday morning at St. Therasa Catholic Church after the Christmas Mass.

The death toll may rise as rescue work progresses. Some of the worshippers have said more than 200 members of the church are still missing.

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