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Burkina Faso: Islamist death squads target Christians, killing anyone wearing a cross, crucifix, or some other Christian image

About 30% of the population of Burkina Faso is Christian, with two-thirds of these being Roman Catholic. Like Christians in other African countries, the Christians of Burkina Faso are increasingly threatened: a previous report noted that “as many as 82 pastors, 1,145 Christians and 151 households have fled from violence in different locations in the Muslim-majority nation.”

Yet the persecution of Christians in Burkina Faso and elsewhere continues to be largely ignored by the international media and human rights organizations. Please continue to pray for the victims, for a new determination among international authorities to take definitive action to end this persecution, and for the persecutors to soften their hearts and turn to Orthodox Christianity, which has yet to establish a presence in that suffering nation.

“WaPo: Islamist Militants ‘Targeting Christians’ in Burkina Faso,” by Thomas D. Williams, Breitbart, August 22, 2019:

The Washington Post reported Thursday that Islamic militants have been singling out Christians for execution in a remarkably honest exposé of the situation.

Post writer Danielle Paquette noted that jihadist death squads have been checking people’s necks for Christian symbols, killing anyone wearing a cross, crucifix, or some other Christian image.

As Breitbart News reported last month, Burkina Faso Bishop Laurent Birfuoré Dabiré has publicly condemned the ongoing, targeted slaughter of Christians by Islamic radicals, warning it could lead to the elimination of a Christian presence in Burkina Faso.

“If this continues without anyone intervening, the result will be the elimination of the Christian presence in this area and — perhaps in the future —in the entire country,” Bishop Dabiré told Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), a Catholic organization providing assistance to persecuted Christians around the world

Since January 2019, there have been five major jihadist attacks on Christians in the country, ACN reported in July, the last of which happened in late June.

“It happened in the neighboring Diocese of Ouahigouya,” the bishop said. “The Islamists arrived and forced everyone to lie on the floor. Then they were registered, and four of them who were carrying crucifixes were killed for being Christians.”

After the massacre, the jihadists told the other villagers that if they did not convert to Islam, they would also be killed.

These targeted killings “followed attacks on churches in the West African nation that have left at least two dozen people dead since February,” Ms. Paquette stated in her Wednesday piece.

“A spreading Islamist insurgency has transformed Burkina Faso from a peaceful country known for farming, a celebrated film festival and religious tolerance into a hotbed of extremism,” she said….

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