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Last Updated: Saturday, 13 May 2006, 00:24 GMT 01:24 UK
Deadly blasts in Ethiopia capital
The damaged office of Ethiopian Airlines in Addis Ababa
People survey the damage outside the offices of Ethiopian Airlines
At least four people have been killed and 40 injured in a series of explosions in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, police say.

Two of the deaths occurred in a blast at a cafe in the Mercato, the city's largest market. A BBC reporter says blood and broken glass litter the site.

There were eight other explosions in busy public places around the city.

There have been several mysterious attacks in the capital since last year's disputed elections.

'Civilians targeted'

The BBC's Amber Henshaw says shoes and other personal belongings can be seen on the veranda outside the cafe.

"I saw the waitresses falling down on the ground, I saw blood," 15-year-old Berekat Betwidid told AFP through tears and sobs.

"These people want to give the impression that there is no peace and stability in the city anymore," said Police spokesman Demsach Hailu.

"All the explosions are targeting civilians."

The police have not said who they believe is behind the explosions and no group has claimed responsibility.

The first blast happened early in the morning local time outside the offices of the Ethiopian Airlines.

The second came a few hours later just metres away outside the headquarters of the state electricity company.

A bus station and a bus were also targeted.

Tension

In March one person was killed and 14 injured when five explosions went off in a single day.

Correspondents say the unexplained blasts have increased tension in Addis Ababa which suffered unrest following last year's polls, which the opposition says were rigged.

In February, the police said they had found a cache of explosives and linked it to the main opposition grouping, the Coalition for Unity and Democracy (CUD).

CUD leaders are on trial at present charged with treason and planning to commit genocide stemming from those protests.


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Scenes of the devastation after the blasts



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