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Indonesian Christian village burnt to ground by neighbouring Muslims


21 March 2008

The mainly Christian village of Horale was attacked on the night of 2 May by a mob from the neighbouring village of Saleman which is predominantly Muslim. The Muslims burnt down 120 houses, three churches and the village school. Four Christians were killed and 56 wounded. Fifteen hectares of crops were destroyed as well as 20 fishing boats and 2 motor-cycles.


Three of the four victims had their throats slit, but all were attacked in other ways as well. Mrs Welhelmina Pattiasina (aged 47) was first tortured, and her grand-daughter Yola (6) had her stomach cut open. Edward Unwaru (84) was burned to death after his throat had been cut. A fourth victim, Josef Laumahina (39) was cut and then burned.

Horale village is home to 175 families, a total of around 2,300 people.

Dr Patrick Sookhdeo, International Director of Barnabas Fund, comments, “Horale is situated in a remote area on the island of Seram in Maluku province. Such areas have seen a number of similar incidents over the last five months. Maluku province experienced intense anti-Christian violence between 1999 and 2001, and it is alarming to consider that this may be starting again. Please pray for a return to harmonious and peaceful relations.”

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Barnabas Fund is assisting the villagers to rebuild their homes and their lives. The first grant was sent in September 2008 and we anticipate a series of grants to steadily reconstruct houses, the community centre, village school and to provide fishing boats. Barnabas Fund will be seeking to raise funds for these needs and your support would be gratefully received. Project ref 22-753.