Authorities found a sizable amount of explosives hidden inside a shipping container from China.
A Nigerian soldier secures the area at the United Nation's office following a suicide car bomb attack in Abuja last month. (Photo: AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, FILE)
Nigerian officials seized a sizeable amount of explosives at one of the West African nation’s major ports, the Associated Press reports.
The explosives were hidden inside a shipping container from China that arrived at Nigeria's Tin Can Port on Jun. 14. Authorities made the discovery after opening the container on Friday to check its contents, Wale Adeniyi, a spokesman for the Nigeria Customs Service, told the AP.
Landing paperwork for the container indicated that the shipment, from Huangpu, China, contained industrial sockets and valves, however, discrepancies on the shipping paperwork raised the suspicions of the customs service, Adeniyi said. When no one came to pick up the container, officials investigated.
Adeniyi said officials opened the container out of concern that whatever was inside the container could grow unstable during Nigeria’s continuing rainy season, which led to the discovery.
Officials still don’t know if the explosives were of a military or commercial grade.
This is the second recent report of explosives being uncovered at a Nigerian port. In October 2010, authorities at Lagos' Apapa Port found a hidden shipment of 107 mm artillery rockets, rifle rounds and other weapons from Iran, the AP reports.
The explosives shipment comes as Nigeria endures increasingly bloody opposition from a radical Muslim sect known locally as Boko Haram.