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TIMELINE-Ethnic and religious unrest in Nigeria

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Tue, 24 Jan 2012 11:31 AM
Author: Reuters
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Jan 24 (Reuters) - Following is a timeline of religious and ethnic violence in Nigeria over the last 10 years:

2000 - Thousands killed in northern Nigeria as non-Muslims opposed to the introduction of sharia (Islamic law) fight Muslims who demand its implementation in state of Kaduna.

Sept. 2001 - Christian-Muslim violence flares after Muslim prayers in the city of Jos in central Nigeria, with churches and mosques set on fire. At least 1,000 people are killed, according to a report in September 2002 by a panel set up by the government of Plateau state, which includes Jos.

Nov. 2002 - Nigeria abandons Miss World contest in Abuja. Decision follows death of at least 216 people in rioting in Kaduna, 200 km (125 miles) northwest of Jos, after newspaper article suggests Prophet Mohammad would probably have married one of the Miss World beauty queens if he were alive today.

Nov. 2008 - Clashes between Muslim and Christian gangs triggered by disputed local government election kill at least 700 people in Jos, according to U.S.-based Human Rights Watch.

July 2009 - More than 800 people are killed in five days of violence between members of Boko Haram and security forces in states across northeast Nigeria. The sect's leader Mohammed Yusuf was captured and died in police custody in Maiduguri on July 30, a disastrous move by the security services given that Boko Haram's current leadership cites this as one of the primary reasons for its continued attacks on police.

Jan. 2010 - Hundreds are reported killed after clashes between Muslim and Christian gangs in Jos, most by gunfire. Police estimate death toll at 326, although some community leaders put the figure at more than 400.

March 2010 - Hundreds of people are killed in clashes between Islamic pastoralists and Christian villagers in the mostly Christian villages of Dogo Nahawa, Zot and Ratsat just south of Jos. Plateau State Commissioner for Information Gregory Yenlong said more than 300 people had died.

Dec. 2010 - At least 80 people are killed in Dec. 24 bombings as well as in clashes two days later between Muslim and Christian youths in Jos.

Jan. 2011 - Human Rights Watch says more than 200 people killed in violence over preceding month, many hacked to death or burned alive in attacks on villages, and reprisal killings in Plateau state.

Aug.-Sept. 2011 - At least 70 people killed in clashes in central Plateau state. Violence started when Christian youths attacked Muslims gathering to celebrate end of Ramadan in Jos.

Nov. 2011 - At least 65 people killed in northeast city of Damaturu when Islamist insurgents bombed churches, mosques and police stations. Boko Haram claims responsibility.

Dec. 2011 - Boko Haram claims responsibility for bomb attacks across Nigeria on Christmas Day, including one at a church near Abuja that killed at least 37 people.

Jan. 2012 - Bomb attacks and gun battles in Kano kill 186 people, Boko Haram's most deadly attack to date.

-- Human Rights watch say in a report that Boko Haram has killed at least 935 people since 2009.

(Reporting by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit) (Editing by Ben Harding)

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