15 Christians slaughtered in attack in Nigeria

 September 20, 2023

15 Christians were brutally murdered by Muslim herdsmen in an armed attack on a village in Nigeria. 

More than 30 Christians were also kidnapped in the assault on the Dogon Noma village in the Kaduna state, the Christian Post reported.

The massacre is the latest instance of the violent persecution that Christians face in the developing world.

Christians massacred in Nigeria

Witnesses said the attackers shot indiscriminately.

“Fulani herdsmen surrounded the village in their hundreds, shooting anybody in sight; the attack occurred at about 7 a.m.,” David Musa told Morning Star News in a text message. “Pray for Dogon Noma community.”

Nigeria is a religiously divided country, with the population roughly split between Christians and Muslims.

Violence against Christians has been rising, with armed raids and kidnappings particularly prevalent in the north of the country, where Islamic influence is stronger, although these incursions have pushed into the Christian south.

23 pastors have been murdered, over 200 Christians have been abducted, and more than 200 churches have been closed in the last four years in Kaduna, according to Christian leaders in the area. Kaduna is located in Nigeria's northwest.

In addition to religious sentiment, a scarcity of land is said to be a factor driving attacks by the Fulani, predominantly Islamic nomads, on Christian farmers. Radical Islamist groups such as Boko Haram and Islamic State are also active in the country.

Nigeria a hotspot for persecution

While Nigeria's government is nominally secular, Christians in Nigeria say the state has failed to protect them.

“We are saddened with these renewed acts of attacks and gruesome killings of innocent Christians in Dogon Noma community by Fulani herdsmen,” said Ernest Maidawa, a youth leader in the area.

“We are urging law enforcement agencies as a matter of urgency to check the spate of these attacks on innocent Christians in our communities."

Nigeria is one of the most dangerous nations in the world to be a Christian, according to the advocacy group Open Doors, which found there were some 5,000 killings of Christians last year.

Islamists "conduct raids on Christian communities, killing, maiming, raping and kidnapping for ransom or sexual slavery," according to Open Doors.

The Biden administration has been accused of ignoring the persecution of Christians in Nigeria, removing the country from a list of "countries of concern" where religious freedom is threatened.

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