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Mozambique: 11 Killed as Islamist Jihadists Reportedly Target Christians in Village

Christians, mostly Roman Catholics, constitute 59% of Mozambique’s population; Muslims comprise 19%. However, the Islamic State (ISIS) has begun to step up operations in the country’s gas-rich northeast, where the Muslim population is largely concentrated.

For more ChristianPersecution.com coverage of the persecution of Christians in Mozambique, see here.

“11 Killed as Islamist Jihadists Reportedly Target Christians in Mozambican village,” National Catholic Register, September 20, 2023:

At least 11 people were killed Sept. 15 after members of the Islamic State attacked a village in Mozambique and opened fire on Christians after hand-picking them from Muslims, the Catholic pontifical and charity foundation Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) International reported.

In a Sept. 18 report, ACN indicated that the terrorists arrived in the village of Naquitengue, located in Mocímboa da Praia district of the embattled Cabo Delgado province, in the early afternoon and summoned the villagers.

After separating the Christians from the Muslims, “based on names” to identify them, “they opened fire on the Christians,” the report stated.

The charity foundation has gathered accounts of those affected by the violence in the Mozambican district and said: “The reports are disturbing.”

Those who spoke to ACN recounted that Christians were “showered with bullets” in the incident.

“There are also records of burned houses and destroyed property,” ACN reported. “Hours later, on Sunday, the terrorist organization Islamic State claimed this attack, reporting 11 deaths, although the number of victims is expected to be higher, at least 12, with several injured.”

The Catholic entity further reported that the attack, which it described as “of enormous cruelty,” caused panic among the populations, who fled to the forests.

Friar Boaventura, a missionary from the Institute of the Fraternity of the Poor of Jesus (PJC) present in Cabo Delgado, confirmed to ACN the terrorists’ strategy to isolate Christians from others before executing them, noting that it was not the first time such an incident had happened in Cabo Delgado.

“This strategy has already happened in the past,” he said, adding that terrorists had already carried out attacks “with this same scenario” — that is, to “separate Christians from Muslims.”

The missionary told ACN that the Sept. 15 incident had left the population scared, adding that the attack occurred at a time when many people were beginning to return to their homelands….

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