At Least 21 Dead in Explosion at Nigerian Shopping Mall

The national police of Nigeria are reporting 21 deaths and 17 injuries in an explosion that hit a shopping plaza in Abuja, the nation's capital, earlier today.

No entity has claimed responsibility for the blast. Boko Haram, the militant group behind the recent kidnappings of dozens of Nigerian girls, claimed two attacks in Abuja in April that together killed 120 people, and warned of further violence. An attack on a World Cup viewing party in Damaturu, Nigeria that killed 14 people earlier this month was also suspected to be the work of the group.

A witness described the violent scene to Reuters:

"I heard a loud blast, it shattered the windows of the shop. We ran out. A lot of people ran too, some with blood stains," said Gimbya Jafaru, who was shopping nearby.

Others told the AP that "body parts are scattered around the exit to Emab Plaza," where the explosion occurred.

Nigeria's Premium Times reports that a local hospital was turning away dead bodies for lack of space.

Also at the National Hospital, Seven bodies were brought to the mortuary, most of them burnt beyond recognition. But the hospital was only admitted five of bodies, for lack of body space. The other two have been sent to other hospitals.

[Image via Twitter]