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An explosion followed by a fire at the Canadian High Commission in Abuja, capital of Nigeria, killed two people and sent two others to the hospital, according to firefighters who responded to the call.
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Images captured by witnesses show a thick column of smoke rising from the diplomatic district of Abuja.
According to Abuja firefighters, a tanker truck exploded in an outbuilding where an electric generator was located.
We can confirm that an explosion has occurred at our High Commission in Nigeria. The fire is out and we are working to shed light on the causes of this situation. I send my sincere condolences to the families of the two people killed in this tragedy, wrote the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mélanie Joly, on her X account (ex-Twitter).
In a statement from Global Affairs Canada sent by email, we confirm an explosion in a generator room that killed two people, in addition to injuring two other people.
We can confirm that all other high commission staff are safe. We are currently ensuring that the site is secure and we will work with local authorities to determine the cause of the explosion, the ministry continues, before ensuring that an investigation will be carried out, but at this point, everything indicates that this was the result of an accident, and not a deliberate act.
Images posted to X by witnesses showed a large plume of black smoke rising from the building on Diplomatic Drive in the city's central business district.
According to data filed by Global Affairs Canada with the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, there were 12 Canadian diplomats stationed in Abuja as of August 2022, as well as 32 locally hired staff.