Page last updated at 16:44 GMT, Saturday, 21 February 2009

Four killed in Nigerian clashes

Nigeria map

At least four people have been killed and 28 injured after clashes broke out in the northern Nigerian city of Bauchi, the Red Cross says.

A Red Cross official said the violence followed an argument between Muslim and Christian communities.

Churches, mosques and houses were set on fire. Troops moved in quickly to restore order, residents said.

Bauchi is close to the city of Jos, where religious gangs killed hundreds last November.

"The security agencies have been directed to deal decisively with the perpetrators of this mayhem," Isa Yuguda, the Bauchi state governor said in a statement.

"The military have been drafted in now and everything is coming back to normal," Abdullahi Kwarbai, a resident of Bauchi, told Reuters.

Nigeria's 140 million people are split almost equally between Muslims and Christians and the two communities generally live peacefully side by side.

But Jos, the capital of neighbouring Plateau state, has seen repeated bouts of inter-communal violence, with more than 1,000 killed during riots in 2001. The situation in Plateau remained calm on Saturday.

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