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Dozens dead in triple attack on Christians by Muslims in Nigeria

Country/Region: Africa, Nigeria

Over 65 people, including two politicians, have been killed in a triple attack on a Christian farming community in Plateau state, Nigeria, by Muslims.

Scene_near_Jos_4X3.jpg
Christian-owned farms were destroyed in the first attack
Jeremy Weate / CC BY 2.0

The first incident happened on Thursday morning (5 July) when Muslims destroyed 43 Christian-owned farms. Nobody was arrested. They followed this up on Saturday (7 July) with attacks on nine Christian villages around the city of Jos, killing dozens of people.  

The next day, a funeral for the victims of the village raids was attacked by Muslims. Two Christian politicians in attendance, Gyang Dantong, the senator representing Plateau North, and Gyang Fulani, the majority leader of the state assembly, were shot dead. Several other people were also killed.

Security forces said Muslim Fulani herdsmen were behind the violence but Islamist militant group Boko Haram issued a statement on Tuesday (10 July) in which they seemed to be claiming responsibility for the attacks. It said:

We thank Allah for the successful attack... in Plateau state on Christians and security men. 

A spokesman for the state’s governor said that the Muslims resented Plateau state’s Christian political leadership. The state is in Nigeria’s Middle Belt between the country’s predominantly Muslim North and mainly Christian South. It has been the scene of frequent anti-Christian violence.

A local Christian leader blamed the Nigerian government for failing to protect Christians. He said that most of the military forces in the area protect Muslim villages instead of the Christian ones.

One commentator suggested that the deaths of the politicians may drive the tensions in Jos to the top of the political agenda.

The triple attack in Plateau state comes as Christians, especially those in Northern Nigeria, are under the mounting threat of violence by Boko Haram, which wants to establish an Islamic state there. Churches have been bombed on an almost weekly basis over the last few months, including two in Jos within the space of two weeks.

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christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

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  • Violent attacks by militants from the Islamist group Boko Haram continue unabated in Northern Nigeria. On one horrendous day of violence on 26 January, at least 138 people were killed. A church in Wada Chakawa village in Adamawa state was targeted; the attackers locked the congregation inside and then detonated bombs, shooting and cutting the throats of people who tried to escape. They then went on a four-hour rampage in the village. Later the same day, Kawuri village in neighbouring Borno state was burned to the ground. Boko Haram is fighting to establish an Islamic state, and Christians are among its main targets. Pray that the Nigerian authorities will succeed in containing its insurgency. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 6 hours ago

  • Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we give You thanks on this Easter Day for the living hope that You have given us and all Your people through the resurrection of Jesus from the dead (1 Peter 1:3). We pray that the prospect of an enduring inheritance and future salvation will encourage our persecuted brothers and sisters to persevere in their faith, whatever may happen to them. We pray that we too may be sustained by this hope in the sufferings that we experience for the sake of Christ. We ask that the joy and resurrection power of the Lord will give strength and peace to persecuted believers today and every day. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Give thanks for the Christ-like responses of Christian leaders in CAR to the crisis that threatens them and their churches. They have distanced themselves from the anti-balaka militias, saying that these should not be labelled as Christian and that they hold no mandate from the churches. The leaders have also condemned the violence in the country, whatever its origin, and have called on Christians to pursue forgiveness, reconciliation and healing. Churches are hiding, defending and caring for thousands of Muslims endangered by the anti-balaka, and one of CAR’s most senior church leaders has invited the president of the country’s Islamic community to move into his church compound. Pray that this powerful witness to the grace and love of Christ will help to bring peace to the shattered country. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Apr 2014 00:00

  • On this Good Friday, give thanks to God for the death of Christ and for His gift of eternal life. Praise Him too for the example of those Christians who have persevered in their faith at the risk of their lives and who have made the ultimate sacrifice for the sake of Christ and the Gospel. Pray that their martyrdom will inspire their suffering brothers and sisters in Christ to endure whatever hardships befall them and will convince their persecutors of the truth and power of the Gospel. Pray too that their bereaved families and churches will not grieve without hope (1 Thessalonians 4:13). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Fri, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Cry out to the Lord for Christians in the Central African Republic (CAR) who have been driven from their homes by the violence that has engulfed their country. Attacks by Islamist Séléka militants and retaliation from “anti-balaka” militias has generated a huge humanitarian crisis in which around two million people, many of them Christians, are in need of emergency assistance. Give thanks for the work of Barnabas partners who have been providing food rations to hundreds of displaced believers in the capital, Bangui, and distributing food, medicines, clothing and seeds to thousands in various regions. Pray that the aid will reach those who need it most, and that the Lord will comfort the relatives and friends of the thousands who have been killed in the fighting. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Thu, Apr 2014 00:00

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