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Nigeria: Muslim Fulani herdsmen kill 17 Christians days after a pastor and missionary were abducted

Christian persecution in Nigeria: Muslim Fulani herdsmen, along with the terror group Boko Haram, have been terrorizing and killing Christians in Nigeria with impunity for years now, with little or no significant response from the Nigerian government or military. Luka Binniyat, spokesman for the Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU), said after these attacks: “It is therefore clear that while the Kaduna state government is enforcing the lockdown against COVID-19 with all its might, it has little or no interest in securing our law-abiding, defenseless communities against these unrelenting massacres and ethnic cleansing. We call on all men and women of conscience, groups, organizations and the international community to assist us in persuading the government of Kaduna state and the federal government of Nigeria to save us from the swords and bullets of these outlaws.”

We see the same pattern all over the world: violence against Christians is aided and abetted by government and law enforcement officials who refuse to act against the perpetrators. These officials may be indifferent, sympathetic, or complicit; the outcome is the same in all cases.

The Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, once again urgently implores the United Nations and the governments of all nations that are committed to human rights and religious freedom to make the plight of Nigeria’s Christians a top priority. Those Christians are walking the way of the Cross. May our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ also bless them with the joy of a resurrection and new flourishing of their communities.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in Nigeria from ChristianPersecution.com, see here.

“Christian Families Slain in Their Homes in Kaduna State, Nigeria,” Morning Star News, May 14, 2020:

JOS, Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Muslim Fulani herdsmen slaughtered families in Christian areas of Nigeria on Monday (May 11), killing 17 men, women and children in Kaduna state days after a pastor and missionary were abducted, sources said.

“Armed Fulani militia” struck predominantly Christian Gonan Rogo village, Kajuru County, less than 40 miles from the city of Kaduna in the southern part of the state, at 11:30 p.m., said Luka Binniyat, spokesman for the Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU), in a press statement. Muslim Fulani residents of the village had slipped away the night before, he said.

“They broke into the home of Jonathan Yakubu, 40, and slaughtered him,” Binniyat said. “They also killed his wife, Sheba Yakubu, 32, and hacked to death their only three children, Patience, 13; Revelation, 6; and Rejoice, 4, thus wiping out the entire Yakubu household. We met relations of the Yakubu’s who were sobbing beyond consolation in front of the house Yakubu had built.”

Six others were injured in the overnight attack, and the Fulani also stole seven head of cattle, he said.

“From this compound, trails of blood led to another gory scene, where Kauna Magaji was killed along with her daughter, Faith Magaji, who died of grisly cutlass cuts to their heads,” Binniyat said. “Still not done, the killers went to another compound, where they met Saraunia Lucky, 25, newly married and who had given birth to her baby three months ago. With the baby cuddled in her arms in fear, she was shot dead.”

A bullet also struck her infant girl’s head, who somehow survived, he said.

“When we visited the village, the baby was nursed by its auntie, who also looked helpless,” Binniyat said, adding that the baby was drinking only water. “She told us that where she could buy infant milk [formula] was under lockdown.”

Church leaders from Albarka Baptist Church, Gwari Avenue, Kaduna, who came to the village to offer condolences rushed the baby to a hospital, where the bullet was removed, and her aunt also received care in the city of Kaduna, he said.

Surveying the village the day after the attack, Binniyat and his team found 6-year-old John Paul hacked to death. Also killed in their homes, he said, were Asanalo Magaji, 32; Yayo Magaji, 13; Paul Bawa, 27; and his 25-year-old wife, Rahila, 25.

At another property, 60-year-old Mailafia Dalhatu was killed as he tried to flee; at another, Binniyat said, Dalhatu’s younger brother, 56-year-old Yaro Dalhatu, was killed along with his wife, Saratu, 45, and their granddaughter, 14-year-old Blessing Yari.

“Another boy, called Popular Teacher, just 17, was gunned down and killed,” he said. “In total, no fewer than 17 persons were murdered in cold blood for no apparent reason by persons who the villagers indentified as Fulani.”

Six people were receiving treatment at various hospitals, he said. The home of one villager, Liberty Yari, was destroyed, but he managed to escape with his family, Binniyat said.

“Their Fulani neighbors, some who have been living around the community for 40 years, had all quietly left in the night before the attack,” he said. “We left the village while a grave was being dug for the mass burial of the victims. There were no single security personnel in the village.”

The SOKAPU team characterized the slaughter as horror and cruelty inflicted on the village of poor, ethnic Adara residents.

“It is therefore clear that while the Kaduna state government is enforcing the lockdown against COVID-19 with all its might, it has little or no interest in securing our law-abiding, defenseless communities against these unrelenting massacres and ethnic cleansing,” Binniyat said. “We call on all men and women of conscience, groups, organizations and the international community to assist us in persuading the government of Kaduna state and the federal government of Nigeria to save us from the swords and bullets of these outlaws.”

Awema Maisamari, president of the Adara Development Association (ADA), told Morning Star News by text message 12 of the residents were killed in the village, and the bodies of five others were recovered in the bush.

“Some were killed with machetes, some were killed by gunshots,” Maisamari said. “Some houses were burned. Some of those who escaped to the bush are still missing.”

Eight Others Killed

On Tuesday night and Wednesday morning (May 13), Muslim Fulani herdsmen killed eight more people in predominantly Christian Kajuru County in their homes, Maisamari said…..

In Chikun County, herdsmen kidnapped the Rev. Reuben Danbala on Saturday (May 9) from his post at Ungwan Badole, also known as Ungwan Mission, according to missions agency Global Glorious Missions.

Herdsmen had attacked Ungwan Badole the previous night, killing three Christians, and Pastor Danbala had escaped; when he returned on Saturday to retrieve vital missions equipment, the herdsmen abducted him, said Samuel Yahaya, a leader with Global Glorious Missions.

“The herdsmen contacted Danbala’s wife on phone on Sunday, May 10, informing her that they’re holding her husband captive,” Yahaya said. “We solicit your intercession for God’s intervention in rescuing Danbala from his captors.”

Herdsmen the night of May 5 also kidnapped a female missionary from Cameroon in Damishi village, Chikun County, in an attack on a Christian couple training her, according to the Rev. Gideon Para-Mallam, president of the Peace Foundation….

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2020 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution but second in the number of Christians killed for their faith, behind Pakistan.

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