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US warns Boko Haram may be planning Abuja attacks

By AFP

LAGOS (AFP) - The US embassy in Nigeria warned on Wednesday that Islamist group Boko Haram may be planning attacks in the capital Abuja, including against hotels frequented by Westerners.

"The US embassy has received information that Boko Haram may be planning attacks in Abuja, Nigeria, including against hotels frequently visited by Westerners," an emergency message to US citizens on its website said.

"The US government has no additional information regarding the timing of these possible attacks. The Nigerian government is aware of the threat and is actively implementing security measures."

It gave no further information on the threats.

The US issued a similar message in November that drew harsh criticism in Nigeria. No attacks occurred in Abuja in the wake of the November warning.

A US diplomat at the time however said the warning was based on specific and credible information, adding that the embassy had no choice but to warn American citizens.

Boko Haram has carried out scores of attacks, mainly in northern Nigeria, that have killed more than 1,000 people since mid-2009.

It claimed responsibility for the August suicide bombing of UN headquarters in Abuja which claimed at least 25 lives.

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